June 19 2013 Latest news:
By Kate Ferguson , Reporter
Friday, May 4, 2012
Conservative Brian Coleman has been toppled from his London Assembly seat in a huge voter swing for Labour.
Labour winner Andrew Dismore won 74,677 votes to become the new Assembly member for Barnet and Camden, 20,000 more than the Conservative incumbent.
Mr Coleman has cut a controversial figure throughout his 12 years in office, and was heavily criticised throughout the campaign for refusing to attend party hustings.
Leaving the count on the arm of his elderly mother Gladys, Mr Coleman declined to talk to the press.
In a triumphant victory speech after the count was called, Mr Dismore said: “We have given a bloody nose to the out-of-touch Conservative and Liberal Democrat government.
“We have seen a vote against the top-down reorganisation of the NHS which is destroying our health service, and a vote against a government guilty of sever incompetence.”
Commenting on Mr Coleman’s defeat, he added: “I believe in being magnanimous in victory. I know what it is like to lose a job in an instant that enjoyed and worked hard at. Brian needs to go away and lick his wounds.
“He has taken a pretty big battering today and I don’t like to kick a man when he is down. People can form their own views on why he didn’t attend hustings.”
Mr Coleman’s share of the votes by eight per cent, while Labour’s rocketed by 16 per cent.