Labour’s Margaret Hodge beat the BNP’s Nick Griffin in Barking by over 18,000 votes last night, after a massive increase in turnout. Mr Griffin said his party was “resilient” after the defeat. However, Mrs Hodge, who took almost half the votes cast said the message to the BNP was a resounding “get out and stay out.”:
“This is a great moment in our history, a never-to-be forgotten moment for both the good and decent people of Barking and Dagenham.” Big guns from the Labour Party put enormous effort into propping up Mrs Hodge, whose Jewish background was consistently highlighted by the BNP in their campaign to dislodge her.
There have been fears that the recession and dissatisfaction with Labour would lead to a surge in BNP support in the election, but Nick Griffin’s party came in third in the East London constituency, behind Labour and the Conservatives.
The BNP did increase its share of the vote by 1.83%, with 6,620 votes and Mr Griffin said that it was not the end of his party: "I would say this to the people of Britain: it is going to be too late for Barking, but it is not too late for Britain".