Andy Street has been re-elected Mayor of the West Midlands
The Conservative scored 54% of votes in the second round, compared to the 46% achieved by the Labour and Co-operative Party candidate, Liam Byrne. This represents an improved result for Street, who polled 50.4% to the Labour candidate’s 49.6% when he was first elected mayor in 2017.
The Greens also saw their vote share increase compared to last time, with the party’s candidate, Steve Caudwell, attaining 5.8% in the first round. The Liberal Democrat candidate, Jenny Wilkinson, received 3.6% of first preference votes (a decrease on the party’s 2017 showing), whilst Pete Durnell of Reform UK tallied 2.2%. Durnell, who represented UKIP at the last election, had previously won 5.6% of the first preference vote.
Thursday’s turnout of 31.2% was an improvement on the 26.7% who voted four years ago.
Speaking after his victory was announced, Street took the opportunity to thank ‘everyone who has put their faith in me.’
‘I want to thank everyone else who’s come on board over [the] last four years, and shares our vision for and belief in the renewal of the West Midlands.’
‘It’s that growing sense of unity and purpose that makes me certain we will succeed.’
He then went on to address the ‘serious challenges’ that the region currently faces due to the coronavirus pandemic, saying: ‘there is no question that the West Midlands will bounce back strongly, and that we will create the dynamic, meritocratic, inclusive society we all crave.’
In an interview with Redbrick prior to his re-election, Street had outlined the centrality of students to the region’s ‘bounce back’ from the pandemic.
However, it was not all disappointment for the Labour Party in the West Midlands. Their candidate for Police and Crime Commissioner, Simon Foster, won election with 53.7% of the vote in the second round.
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