Vince Cable: Peterborough was the Brexit Party’s ‘big opportunity’

Vince Cable: Peterborough was the Brexit Party’s ‘big opportunity’

The Liberal Democrats came fourth in the Peterborough by-election

Friday, June 7, 2019

The Liberal Democrat leader has said that the Peterborough by-election was the Brexit Party’s “big opportunity” and they failed to win.

The Labour Party won the election on Thursday, beating the Brexit Party by 683 votes.

Sir Vince Cable, whose party came fourth, told talkRADIO’s Ian Collins: “[The Brexit Party] had a disappointment. The Conservatives had a disappointment.”

He added: “If they were going to win anywhere for a parliamentary seat, this was their big opportunity.”

The constituency, which voted 60.9 per cent to Leave in the 2016 referendum, had been regarded as potentially fertile ground for Nigel Farage's Brexit Party.

Sir Vince said he was “quietly very pleased” with the Lib Dems’ result.

“We were the only party who made significant head-road amongst the established parties,” he said.

“We knew from the outset that it was not the kind of seat that we would do well.

“Unlike the Labour Party, who threw the kitchen sink at it, we did not invest overly heavily but we did incredibly well.”

However, the Liberal Democrat leader said the Brexit Party could “damage” the Conservatives in future elections.

“The Conservative Party is now going to lose on both sides,” he said. “They will lose the hard Brexit support to the Brexit Party and they will lose their more traditional moderate Remain voters to us.”

The Conservatives came third in the Peterborough by-election with 7,243 votes, behind the Brexit Party and Labour.

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