Nick Griffin has lost his seat in the European parliament.
The leader of the British National Party formerly represented the North-West as an MEP. He and fellow BNP member Andrew Brons were elected in 2009, although Brons has since left the party and did not stand for re-election this year.
The BNP now has no representation in the European parliament and only two councillors across Britain. Its collapse is now complete: as Tim Wigmore reported earlier this week, in 2012 its votes slumped to 26,000 – down from 240,000 in the 2008 elections. In January, Griffin was declared bankrupt.
Speaking to Sky’s Adam Boulton, Griffin said: “We are indeed what you might call racist.” Asked where the party’s voters had gone, he said: “They’ve voted for Ukip’s racist policies instead.” He added that he was encouraged by the success of the Front National in France. He later tweeted from @nickgriffinmep: “If anyone can tell me how to change my twitter title without losing the account I’d be obliged! ;-) #we’renotgoingawayyouknow”
The Lib Dem president Tim Farron was quoted by the Guardian‘s Clare Phipps as saying: “The only thing that will make me feel better walking out of here tonight will be knowing that Nick Griffin is no longer my MEP.”
Update, 00.26: Griffin won just 32,826 votes in the North-West, coming sixth (Greens were fourth, Lib Dems fifth).