Looking at the European and local election results there are real reasons both to celebrate and to worry. The rise of both the Eurosceptic right and the Neo Nazi far right throughout Europe is worrying. UKIP offers little in the way of constructive engagement with any of the real issues facing the UK or Europe, let alone humanity and the biosphere. The rise of Golden Dawn in Greece and Jobbik in Hungary represents something altogether scarier.
However in England & Wales we can at least celebrate the election of three Green Party MEPs. Previously there were just two, I’d hoped for five or six, but three is still better than two. Keith Taylor in the South East Region, and Jean Lambert in London, were both re-elected. Molly Scott Cato is our new MEP, the first ever Green MEP to represent the South West Region, and a leading green economist. She will be a great asset to the European Parliament, and a great voice for the people of the South West of England. Well done Molly and all who helped her and voted for her!
Here in the West Midlands Will Duckworth failed to get elected as our Green MEP despite getting 71,000 votes. Thanks to all who voted for him. However the Green Party in the West Midlands continues to make steady progress at the level of local councils. In 2009 we had just three councillors on three councils, now we have twenty-three councillors on nine councils: five straight years of steady increase. In Solihull the Greens have ten seats and are now the official opposition.
Overall, for the Green Party in England and Wales, this is slower progress than I’d like, of course, but still worth a bit of a celebration!
For a different, and very interesting, angle on the UK part of the Euro elections see http://makewealthhistory.org/2014/05/27/is-britain-a-post-democracy/