Conservatives hold Monmouth amid election turbulence

By Monmouthshire Beacon/Chepstow Beacon in Politics

DAVID Davies has held his Monmouth parliamentary seat with 53 per cent of the vote.

The longstanding Conservative MP thanked his voters, opponents, and supporters, before commenting on the election countrywide.

Leading with a majority of 8,206 over Labour candidate Ruth Jones, Mr Davies spoke of the wider uncertainty facing the party tonight. “Clearly there is something going on in the country tonight, it’s too early to say exactly what," he said. "But we’re clearly seeing a momentous political event going on I’ve no doubt about that.

“But as believers in democracy, as a supporter of democracy I know that if the Conservative Party takes a bit of a thrashing from time to time, that is the price I’m willing to pay for living in a democracy and I’m sure we all agree with that.”

The re-elected Monmouth MP also thanked Gwent Police for attending the count, as well as his family and political campaign team.

The constituency votes are as follows:

• Ian Roy Chandler (Green Party): 954 votes

• Carole Sian Damon (Plaid Cymru): 1,338 votes

• David Thomas Charles Davies (Conservatives): 26,411 votes

• Veronica German (Liberal Democrats): 2,064 votes

• Ruth Lorraine Jones (Labour): 18,205 votes

• Roy Anthony Neale (UKIP): 762 votes

57 vote papers were discounted as they were not marked, and seven had more than one box marked.

1.30am

Whilst votes are being counted, prospective candidates have spoken to the Beacon about their respective campaigns.

Labour candidate Ruth Jones praised her team, saying: “The campaign has been done with a passion and a real will.” When asked about the national exit poll results, she said: “You have to take any poll with a pinch of salt. The only poll that matters is the election.” She added that “anxiety and unease” about “Brexit” was a major issue raised by voters whilst campaigning.

Conservative candidate David Davies said: “With no reason to doubt exit polls, the prospect of a hung parliament would be very difficult.” He added that “nationally we aimed to improve our majority“ but “at 12:55am, it does not seem to be the case.” He said that alongside “Brexit”, the social care policy and national security were the three main issues voters discussed whilst campaigning.

Green Party candidate Ian Chandler said that he had “enjoyed talking to people to get the message out.” He said that although many people supported the party’s message, he was “not expecting a great result tonight.” He added that alongside environmental issues, the biggest concerns voters had contacted him about was the fox hunting ban.

Liberal Democrat candidate Veronica German said the campaign had been the more polarised than any other she had seen over the last 30 years. She said “We’ve seen a bit of a surge to unseat the Conservatives, people apologetically tactically voting.” She added that the campaign had seen “younger people more involved than ever.”

Plaid Cymru candidate Sian Damon praised a “very lively campaign, the first time I’ve stood.” She said her campaign concentrated on social care, NHS funding, and the representation of Wales during “Brexit.”

11.10pm

THE votes are in for the Monmouth constituency after polling stations closed at 10pm.

The voter turnout for Monmouth constituency has been announced at 76.7 per cent (49,798 votes were cast out of 64,909).

Counters have finished verifying the votes here at Chepstow Leisure Centre, and will now move on to the count.

Six candidates are contesting the parliamentary constituency of Monmouth. The candidates, sorted by alphabetical order, are:

Ian Roy Chandler (Green Party)

Carole Sian Damon (Plaid Cymru)

David Thomas Charles Davies (Conservative)

Veronica German (Liberal Democrat)

Ruth Lorraine Jones (Labour)

Roy Anthony Neale (UKIP)

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