General Election 2019: Conservatives' Suella Braverman keeps Fareham seat after campaigning with baby boy
AN MP who took her baby on the campaign trail has been returned for a third time.
Barrister Suella Braverman was first elected in Fareham in 2015.
Now the ardent Brexiteer, a member of the European Research Group and former Brexit minister under Theresa May, has won again.
Mrs Braverman took 63.7 per cent of the vote on a 72.8 per cent turnout.
She said the results seen across the country tonight represent a chance for the government to ‘restore democracy.’
Mrs Braverman said: ‘We have had a Remainer parliament.
‘They have believed that they know best. But tonight we have have an unequivocal mandate for Brexit. If you are on the losing side, you have to respect the result.’
Voters facing a ‘stark’ choice have turned out in the droves, the Tory leader of Fareham Borough Council has said.
Turnout has increased from 72 per cent in 2017 to 72.8 per cent in this December election.
Conservative candidate Suella Braverman, who is fighting to return to her seat, said campaigning during maternity leave was ‘not part of the plan’.
But she said her son, five-month-old George Braverman, has been wearing a Conservative rosette on the campaign trial and has ‘won over some voters’.
Mrs Braverman said: ‘If I’m successful tonight sure he has to take some of the credit for that. He has been out on the campaign trail with his blue rosette.
‘The exit poll is looking really positive. It’s reflecting what I have been hearing in Fareham. I have been struck by the number of people who said they have voted Labour all their life but they were going to vote Conservative because they didn’t like Jeremy Corbyn and wanted to get Brexit done.’
Conservative councillor Sean Woodward, leader of Fareham Borough Council for more than 20 years, said the exit poll - showing a Conservative majority of more than 60 seats - reflected the 'fear' of Labour leader Mr Corbyn becoming prime minister.
But the Tory party's campaign had hit a few 'bumps' along the way, he said.
Cllr Woodward said: 'Campaigns are always going to be dictated by events, to paraphrase Macmillan.
'But you have to proceed calmly, and Boris has done that.
'There's always going to be bumps in the road, but the Conservatives have run a very clear campaign.
'The choice has never been as stark as it has been this time.'
But Labour activists at the Fareham constituency count at Ferneham Hall remained unmoved by early predictions.
Richard Ryan, election agent for Labour in Fareham, said: 'These polls can be out by a large number - there are a large number of marginal seats. A couple of hundreds of votes can make it all the difference.'
Other candidates said that Brexit had not been the only issue discussed on the doorsteps of voters.
Nick Lyle, the Green Party candidate for the area, said it had been the 'the climate election' as well as the Brexit election.
He said: 'Labour and the Lib Dems have been talking about the green new deal.
'And Boris is a fan of buses - I know he wants to turn all buses electric, but we shall see.'