A surge of pro-European voters at yesterday’s General Election have denied Theresa May the majority she wanted for an extreme, destructive Brexit, the Open Britain campaign says today.
The Prime Minister called for “a direct personal mandate for the hardest of hard Brexits”, the pro-European groups said, while voters “made clear their opposition to a future for Britain that would leave us poorer, less tolerant, and less secure.”
The cross-party campaign has directed thousands of its volunteers to 50 key seats over the course of the general election, both to campaign for pro-European incumbents and to support challengers to pro-hard Brexit MPs.
Remarkably, pro-European incumbents retained their seats in 26 of the 29 constituencies in which they were endorsed by Open Britain, including previously written-off seats like Ilford North, North Norfolk and Wakefield.
Open Britain volunteers also helped pull of spectacular gains for pro-European parties, such as in Oxford West & Abingdon, Bristol North West, Enfield Southgate, and Kingston & Surbiton.
The result was in spite of the fact that the election campaign began with predictions of a Conservative majority of well over 100, giving them a mandate to pull Britain out of the Single Market and carry out an extreme and potentially chaotic Brexit.
Commenting, Roland Rudd, Chairman of Open Britain, said:
“We were told that this would be the Brexit General Election. It was, but not in the way many of us feared.
“Far from overwhelming pro-Europeans in a hard Brexit surge, millions of pro-European voters have voted to utterly reject the Government’s hard Brexit agenda. The British people have made clear their opposition to a future for Britain that would leave us poorer, less tolerant, and less secure.
“I am proud of the role Open Britain played in this election, directing thousands of volunteers into the battlegrounds where they made a real difference.
“The Government sought a direct mandate for the hardest of hard Brexits. That mandate clearly does not exist. On the contrary, it is clear that the only way forward that can unite our country is through a repudiation of the hard Brexit agenda.
“In the new Parliament, pro-Europeans of all parties must take this golden opportunity to pull together and fight to keep Britain an open, tolerant, prosperous country. That means membership of the Single Market and Customs Union; a fair deal for EU citizens living in the UK; the maintenance of our close security links with Europe; and a refusal to even countenance a Brexit with no deal at all.”
Notes to editors:
The list of Open Britain’s key seats at this general election is below:
26 out of 29 Open Britain-endorsed incumbents were elected in the General Election:
Edinburgh South LAB HOLD
Hampstead and Kilburn LAB HOLD
Tooting LAB HOLD
Brighton Pavilion GREEN HOLD
Richmond Park CON GAIN FROM LD
Ealing Central & Acton LAB HOLD
Hove LAB HOLD
Sheffield Hallam LAB GAIN
Leeds North East LAB HOLD
City of Chester LAB HOLD
Brentford & Isleworth LAB HOLD
Exeter LAB HOLD
Southport CON GAIN FROM LD
Nottingham South LAB HOLD
Pontypridd LAB HOLD
Wirral South LAB HOLD
Southampton Test LAB HOLD
Leicester West LAB HOLD
Ilford North LAB HOLD
Carshalton and Wallington LD HOLD
Newcastle upon Tyne North LAB HELD
Wrexham LAB HELD
North Norfolk LD HELD
Sedgefield LAB HELD
Penistone and Stocksbridge LAB HELD
Bishop Auckland LAB HOLD
Newcastle under Lyme LAB HOLD
Wakefield LAB HOLD
Wolverhampton South East LAB HOLD
Six Open Britain-endorsed challengers were elected in the General Election:
Vauxhall LAB HOLD
Kensington RESULT NOT YET KNOWN
St Albans CON HOLD
Enfield Southgate LAB GAIN
Oxford West and Abingdon LD GAIN FROM CON
Bristol North West LAB GAIN FROM CON
Kingston and Surbiton LD GAIN FROM CON
Chipping Barnet CON HOLD
Hendon CON HOLD
Lewes CON HOLD
Wycombe CON HOLD
Gower LAB GAIN FROM CON
Chingford and Woodford Green CON HOLD
Sutton and Cheam CON HOLD
Belfast East DUP HOLD
Brecon and Radnorshire CON HOLD
Hazel Grove CON HOLD
Thornbury and Yate CON HOLD
Wells CON HOLD
St Ives CON HOLD
Eastbourne LD GAIN FROM CON