European Parliament election, 1989 (United Kingdom)

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United Kingdom European Parliament election, 1989
United Kingdom
1984 ←
15 June 1989 → 1994

81 seats to the European Parliament
  First party Second party
  Kinnock, Neil.jpg Margaret Thatcher cropped2.png
Leader Neil Kinnock Margaret Thatcher
Party Labour Conservative
Alliance PES EPP
Leader since 2 October 1983 11 February 1975
Last election 32 seats, 36.5% 45 seats, 40.8%
Seats won 45 32
Seat change Increase13 Decrease13
Popular vote 6,153,640 5,331,077
Percentage 40.1% 34.7%
Swing Increase3.6% Decrease6.1%

Leader of Largest Party before election

Margaret Thatcher
Conservative

Subsequent Leader of Largest Party

Neil Kinnock
Labour

The European Parliament Election, 1989 was the third European election to be held in the United Kingdom. It was held on 15 June. The electoral system was First Past the Post in England, Scotland and Wales and Single Transferable Vote in Northern Ireland. The turnout was again the lowest in Europe.

This election saw the best performance ever by the Green Party (UK) (formerly the Ecology Party), collecting over 2 million votes and 15% of the vote share. It had only received 70,853 as the Ecology Party in the previous election. However because of First Past the Post system, the Green Party did not gain a single MEP, while the Scottish National Party received 1 seat with only 3% of the vote share. The SNP received almost double the amount of votes it received in the previous election, its vote share rose by 1%.

The election also saw Labour overtake the Conservatives for the first time in any election since October 1974 and the first time ever in a European election, winning 13 more seats.

  • Overall (England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) turnout: 36% (EU average: 59%)
  • Overall votes cast: 15,896,078

England, Scotland and Wales[edit]

Party Votes[1] Seats Loss/Gain Share of Vote (%)
Labour 6,153,640 45 +13 40.1
Conservative 5,331,077 32 -13 34.7
Green 2,292,705 0 0 14.9
Social and Liberal Democrats 986,292 0 0 6.2
SNP 406,686 1 0 2.6
Plaid Cymru 115,062 0 0 0.7
Social Democrat 75,886 0 0 0.5
Independent 12,724 0 0 0.1
Independent Conservative 6,996 0 0 0.0
Communist 4,420 0 0 0.0
Monster Raving Loony 4,263 0 0 0.0
Mebyon Kernow 4,224 0 0 0.0
Wessex Regionalist 2,332 0 0 0.0
International Communist 1,567 0 0 0.0
National Front 1,471 0 0 0.0
Humanist 1,349 0 0 0.0
Socialist (GB) 919 0 0 0.0
Corrective 707 0 0 0.0
Communist League 323 0 0 0.0

Total votes cast: 15,361,267

Northern Ireland[edit]

Party Candidate(s) Seats Loss/Gain First Preference Votes[2]
Number  % of vote
DUP Ian Paisley 1 0 160,110 29.9
SDLP John Hume 1 0 136,335 25.5
UUP Jim Nicholson 1 0 118,785 22.2
Sinn Féin Danny Morrison 0 0 48,914 9.1
Alliance John Alderdice 0 0 27,905 5.2
Conservative Myrtle Boal 0 0 25,789 4.8
Green Malcolm Samuel 0 0 6,569 1.0
Workers' Party Seamus Lynch 0 0 5,590 1
Labour Representation Mark Langhammer 0 0 3,540 0
Labour '87 Brian Caul 0 0 1,274 0

Total votes cast - 534,811.

Party Leaders in 1989[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]