European Parliamentary Elections 2019
The European Parliamentary Elections will take place in the UK on Thursday 23 May
When do we find out the results?
The polls will take place in the UK on Thursday 23 May, while the rest of the EU will be voting over the next few days. The results from every nation will be released on the evening of Sunday 26 May after the last polling station in the continent is closed.
What does the European Parliament do?
The European Parliament works with ministers from the 28 European Union (EU) member states, collectively known as the Council, to approve, amend or reject European laws. The laws are proposed by other entities (the European Commission), which are not directly elected by the public. The European Parliament is the only directly-elected EU institution.
The topics the European Parliament covers include: public health, animal rights, consumer rights, the environment, migration and asylum, regional economic development, and workers’ rights.
In the last five years the parliament has had a part in agreeing 1,100 EU laws.
Seats in the European Parliament representing England, Scotland and Wales are distributed according to a system of proportional representation known as D'Hondt, which is famously difficult to predict unless you're a top psephologist (if you are, please get in touch). Under D'Hondt, you vote just once for either a party, or an independent candidate. Northern Ireland uses the Single Transferable Vote system.
Voters in England, Wales, Scotland and, err, Gibraltar will choose 73 MEPs in total. The number of MEPs differs in each region depending on its population. There are 12 multi-member regional constituencies in England, Wales and Scotland – Northern Ireland is a separate constituency with three MEPs.
- East Midlands (5 MEPs)
- East of England (7 MEPs)
- London (8 MEPs)
- North East (3 MEPs)
- North West (8 MEPs)
- Northern Ireland (3 MEPs)
- Scotland (6 MEPs)
- South East (10 MEPs)
- South West (6 MEPs)
- Wales (4 MEPs)
- West Midlands (7 MEPs)
- Yorkshire and the Humber (6 MEPs)
MEPs are elected according to the parties' total share of the vote in each region, and in the order their party has placed them on the party's list.
The results will be announced on 26 May, because many EU countries hold their elections on a Sunday.
How to vote
Sadly it's too late now to register to vote in these elections, but do get on your electoral register anyway: who knows when the next UK General Election will take place? (It has to be by May 2022 but our politics are so unpredictable at the moment that it could happen any time between now and then.)
Polling stations are open from 7am to 10pm on Thursday 23 May. To find your polling station, check your polling card, contact your local council or use this site. You do not have to bring your polling card with you to vote.
At the polling station, you will be given a long ballot paper listing all the names of the candidates the parties are putting up in your region, plus any candidates standing independently. To vote for a party or individual, put a cross inside the box next to their name.
If you live in England, Wales and Scotland, you choose one party or individual to vote for.
In Northern Ireland – which uses the Single Transferable Vote system – you are able to rank the parties in order of preference.
The deadline to apply for a postal vote for these elections has passed. If your application for a postal vote has been approved then you will need to send your vote before 10pm on 23 May.
The deadline to apply to vote by proxy in these elections has passed. If you have been appointed as someone’s proxy you must go to the polling station of the person who appointed you as their proxy. You will receive a proxy poll card in the post telling you where and when to cast their vote for them.
Undecided? Take this quiz.
Still undecided? Your Vote Matters have put together this quiz undecided voters can take to understand which representatives match their views on a variety of issues.
Where do the parties stand on Brexit?
Full list of parties and their candidates in UK.
Prime Minister Theresa May
The public want us to go on and deliver Brexit. It is absolutely right they do so. We are working on an agreement that can command a majority of the House of Commons
The Conservative Party are yet to release their European Election manifesto.
Labour will continue to oppose the government's bad deal or a disastrous no deal. And if we can't get agreement along the lines of our alternative plan, or a general election, Labour backs the option of a public vote.
Change UK – The Independent Group
We demand a People's Vote so the people of the UK can say they want to remain in the EU.
From the Green Party EU manifesto
A vote for the Greens is a vote for change. It is a vote to not let go of Europe, but to make it into what it was promised to be: a union not of selfish interests but of shared responsibility.
Sir Vince Cable
We have a clear mission to stop Brexit. We are a strong vehicle for committed remain voters.
The Democratic Unionist Party
The only rightful and respectful implementation of the mandate from 17.4m people is for us all to leave the EU on the same terms. It need not and must not be a choice between respecting the result and the Union.
From the Sinn Féin EU manifesto
Sinn Féin support the Withdrawal Agreement – with the backstop – as the least worst Brexit option, which will protect jobs, trade and avoid a hardening of the border.
We're appealing for support from across the political spectrum to secure a People's Vote, to make Wales matter, and ultimately to maintain Wales' membership of the EU.
By voting SNP, people in Scotland can send a clear and unequivocal message: Scotland has had enough of the Westminster chaos and Scotland does not want Brexit.
The SNP are yet to release their European Election manifesto.
The Brexit Party
The new Brexit Party will ask the electorate not only to support a clean break from the European Union, but also to begin a political revolution in the UK.
The Brexit Party do not plan on publishing a manifesto.
UK Independence Party
UKIP doesn't want these European elections to take place but they offer the 17.4m leavers the chance to vote once again to leave. You told them once, now tell them again.