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Yesterday, Ursula von der Leyen was narrowly elected as the President of the EU Commision after receiving 383 votes in favour and 327 against, with 22 MEPs abstaining and one blank ballot.
Von der Leyen needed a minimum of 374 votes – an overall majority of MEPs – in order to be confirmed as President.
However, of those who cast their vote, the new EU President’s vote share was 53.9% – actually a higher vote share than was gained by the Brexit campaign, at 51.9%, in 2016.
Despite the Brexit vote having less of a mandate, Nigel Farage couldn’t resist attempting to discredit the newly-elected EU President, stating on Twitter:
“Ursula von der Leyen has scraped in by 9 votes. Power but no legitimacy.”
Ursula von der Leyen has scraped in by 9 votes. Power but no legitimacy.
— Nigel Farage (@Nigel_Farage) July 16, 2019
Unsurprisingly, Farage’s comment was immediately leapt upon and ridiculed, with anti-Brexit campaigner Femi Oluwole’s tongue-in-cheek response – humurously referencing the 2016 Brexit referendum result – gaining almost 3 times the amount of ‘likes’ as Farage’s initial tweet:
“So what you’re saying is… a 51.something% victory isn’t enough for a vote to be legitimate? Would that be what you’d call “unfinished business”?”
So what you're saying is… a 51.something% victory isn't enough for a vote to be legitimate? Would that be what you'd call "unfinished business"?
— Femi (@Femi_Sorry) July 16, 2019
Other responses also referenced the same staggering hypocrisy:
But she won.
Get over it.
— carol hedges (@carolJhedges) July 16, 2019
That’s called a democratic vote Nigel. You’re welcome. Bad luck on you if you didn’t bother.
— Emma Kennedy (@EmmaKennedy) July 16, 2019
In addition to numerous people stating the astonishing irony of Nigel Farage claiming a 54% mandate wasn’t democratically legitimate, many also pointed to the distinct lack of democracy in his own party:
How did you become leader of that nasty little party again?
— James Silvester (@JamesSilvester1) July 17, 2019
Who voted you in as party leader? How many voted May in as PM? How many will vote in the next PM?
— John Kinloch (@JayKay1903) July 16, 2019
The hypocrisy of the man is simply staggering.