|Brabin pictured at count, wearing a face mask emblazoned with the regional map|
Labour's Tracy Brabin has won the inaugural West Yorkshire mayoral election after a run-off against the Tory candidate. In the run-off she received a total of 310,923 first and second preference votes against 208,957 for the Conservative candidate. It's a double celebration for the former actress, as today is her 60th birthday.
This contest is the last of the mayoral elections to be declared.
West Yorkshire Mayor (New Post)
Tracy Brabin (Lab) 261,170 (43.1%)
Matt Robinson (Con) 176,167 (29.1%)
Bob Buxton (Yorks) 58,851 (9.7%)
Andrew Cooper (Green) 55,833 (9.2%)
Stewart Golton (LDem) 30,162 (5.0%)
Waj Ali (Reform) 14,943 (2.5%)
Thérèse Hirst (Eng Dem) 8,969 (1.5%)
Tracy Brabin (Lab) 59.8%
Matt Robinson (Con) 40.2%
The next question on everyone's mind is what happens to Brabin's position as an MP. This was a question posed on Twitter by journalist Michael Crick.
Thanks to Crick's inquiries we have now learned that Brabin has no choice but to resign her Batley and Spen seat. This is because she will inherit the responsibility of West Yorkshire police and crime commissioner, a role that cannot be held by an MP. The role of PCC in Sheffield is not held by the mayor, hence Dan Jarvis maintains two jobs. However, contrary to Crick's assertion about that role not being paid - it is, to the tune of £79,000. This means Jarvis picks up £81,932 as an MP in addition to his £79k as mayor.
One wonders if Brabin would have given up her seat given a choice. Poor Tracy, how on earth she will manage to survive on £105,000 a year for the next three years? Luckily she knows how to feed her family for as little as a fiver, thanks to her days working in Sainsburys...
Another parliamentary by-election for Starmer in the north of England is the stuff of nightmares for the embattled Labour leader, particularly given that Batley and Spen is another marginal. Labour will go into this by-election defending a 3,525 majority. Their majority in Hartlepool was 3,595.
Batley & Spen, 2019 general election
Tracy Brabin (Lab) 22,594 (42.7%) -12.8%
Mark Brooks (Con) 19,069 (36.0%) -2.8%
Paul Halloran (Ind) 6,432 (12.2%) New
John Lawson (LDem) 2,462 (4.7%) +2.4%
Clive Minihan (Brexit) 1,678 (3.2%) New
Ty Akram (Green) 692 (1.3%) n/c
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