General Election 2019: re-elected Warwick and Leamington MP Matt Western says 'time is right' for new Labour party leader
Re-elected Warwick and Leamington MP Matt Western has said the 'time is right' for new Labour Party leader after speaking following his close run victory in the General Election.
Mr Western won the election for the Warwick and Leamington seat with 23,718 votes - 789 better than Conservative candidate Jack Rankin who came second with 22,929.
But it was a disappointing night for Labour, with the Conservatives taking a considerable majority of seats.
Mr Western said: "I'm delighted by the result. It's an immense honour to be re-elected and the truth is I had a great team behind me who out an extraordinary amount of work in.
"We did so much in terms of getting out to the electorate and talking to them and I'm really pleased by it.
"Tonight's result here reflects the national result in that there has been a certain amount of softening towards Labour generally and then there was an increase in the share of the vote for the Lib Dems - they gained roughly 1,500 to 2,000 votes which I probably lost and likewise the Green Party won a few more too and that's disappointing.
"The national picture is extremely disappointing.
"I've lost some exceptionally talented colleagues and I can't begin to tell you how saddening that is because they are really decent people who deserve to be representing their constituencies.
"The headwinds have been really quite challenging and they will have fought hard but i really feel for them right now."
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn announced after the parties many defeats today he will not be leading Labour into the next General Election.
Mr Western said: "I know Jeremy Corbyn as a colleague and he was once my MP several years ago and he is a thoroughly decent individual.
"But this is the second election he has lead the party into and on neither occasion we've won so it would have been a quick decision for him to arrive at.and now we move on to a new leader.
It's pretty straightforward but the time is right, the result has not been good and I look forward to seeing who is going to put themselves forward,"
"There are some big national issues we should be concerned about - the climate emergency and also the economy which really is not doing well presently.
"If we have the Brexit that's being talked about that will be further damaging. So I think what's next is seeing what the Government's agenda is and what their approach to Brexit is and then tackling them on that."
The result of the election for the Warwick and Leamington seat was as follows:
Louis Adam (Lib Dem) – 4,995
Xander Bennett (Social Democratic Party) – 67
Jonathan Chilvers (Green) – 1,536
Bob Dhillon (Ind) – 153
Tim Griffiths (Brexit) – 807
Jack Rankin (Conservative) – 22,929
Matt Western (Labour) – 23,718
There were 76,373 electors of whom 128 spoiled their ballot papers.
The turnout was 71 per cent.