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Green party expect European election gains, Natalie Bennett says



The Green party say they expect to make gains in Thursday’s European elections, after opinion polls suggested the party could triple its number of MEPs from two to six. 

Tomorrow will see elections across the UK to the European Parliament and elections to 172 councils in England and Northern Ireland, and the Greens are optimistic about their chances. 

“It is very clear that people, when they hear our message, that we have to have real change in economy, society and politics […] people are really getting that message and liking what they hear,” party leader Natalie Bennett told the BBC. 

“I stood for Green party leader saying I was there to help to get lots more MEPs elected and I am pleased to say at the moment we are on track to do just that.” 

Bennett argued that this was also a significant achievement as her party receives “a fraction of the media coverage” given to UKIP.

While last minute polling has suggested that tomorrow’s elections could see the Green party push the Liberal Democrats into fifth place in Europe, it also indicates a surge in support for Nigel Farage’s party.

One YouGov poll puts UKIP and Labour level, each with 27% of the vote, while the Conservatives come in third place on 23%.

However, two polls from Survation and Opinium put UKIP ahead, with 32% and 31% of the vote respectively.

Commenting on his party’s prospects, Farage said he does not expect accusations of racism to affect the results – after he suggested that people would be worried about living next door to Romanian families in a controversial interview.

“We hit the front three weeks ago and when you’re out in front and everybody’s firing every missile they’ve got at you, yeah, sometimes a few cracks begin to show,” he said. 

“But what hasn’t changed and what hasn’t broken is what we stand for and the fact we’re connecting with the British public.”

Meanwhile, Liberal Democrats leader Nick Clegg, who battled Farage on the subject of Europe in televised debates last month, has labelled UKIP’s view as “dogmatic”.

“I just don’t go along with the Nigel Farage belief that everything that has a problem under the sun can be solved by leaving the EU,” he said. 

Photo: London Green party via Twitter

Further reading:

Greens push Lib Dems into fifth place ahead of European election

Local and European elections: energy and climate preview

Political parties on the spot: how do we make our democracy sustainable?

Green Party launches European election campaign

The Guide to Sustainable Democracy 2014



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