A by-election triggered by the murder of U.K. MP Jo Cox has delivered a resounding victory to her Labour successor Tracy Brabin — a former actor in popular, long-standing soap opera Coronation Street. Brabin was elected to succeed Cox as Labour MP for Batley on Friday morning with an overwhelming 86 percent of the vote, in what she described as a victory for “hope and unity.”
The Conservatives, Greens, Ukip and Liberal Democrats did not field a candidate in the by-election, as a mark of respect for 41-year-old Cox, who was brutally killed outside her constituency office in June. However, nine outlying candidates, mostly from far-right parties, did contest the seat — and lost the 500-pound deposit required to run when they failed to reach five percent of the vote. Cox’s husband welcomed the news, tweeting, “Great to see all the purveyors of hate lose their deposits.”
He also posted a picture of his late wife on the night she was first elected, in May 2015, writing, “She was calm, serene and full of grace that night.”
— Jo Cox MP (@Jo_Cox1) May 9, 2015
Acknowledging her victory, over heckling from far-right candidates’ supporters, Brabin said, “I hope Jo will be proud tonight of our community. We have shown that we stand together with one voice choosing unity and hope.”
She also thanked the mainstream parties for “recognizing the deeply sad nature” of the election with the gesture of not fielding candidates. It was Cox who had first suggested to Brabin she considering entering politics. Brabin, who was a friend of the late MP, had roles in EastEnders and Emmerdale as well as Coronation Street, and has written for several other popular British TV programs.
Read the full story at The Guardian.