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Coalition Parties Suffer Humiliating Defeat in UK By-Election

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TEHRAN, March 4 (ICANA)- Britain's ruling coalition parties suffered a humiliating by-election defeat at the hands of Labour in Barnsley Central, northern England, underlining the growing unpopularity of the government.
Friday, March 04, 2011 9:27:34 PM
Coalition Parties Suffer Humiliating Defeat in UK By-Election

Labour candidate Dan Jarvis coasted to victory in Thursday's poll, winning an overwhelming 60 per cent of the vote in spite of the jailing of the party's MP Eric Illsley for expenses fraud, which caused the by-election.

The Conservatives came third behind the anti-European UKIP fringe party, while the Liberal Democrats slumped from second to sixth place, beaten by even the extreme right-wing BNP as well as a local independent candidate.

Lib Dem candidate Dominic Carman, the son of a renowned barrister, said his party had been given 'a kicking', while Jarvis said the result, announced early Friday, was a message to the coalition.

Less than one year in office, the Conservatives were seen paying a heavy price for its program of public service cuts and the Lib Dems for reneging on many of its election pledges in a deal to join the coalition.

The by-election is the second since last May's general election and comes after Labour also comfortably held Oldham East and Saddleworth in northern England in January, which also came after its MP was disqualified for making false statements.

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