Polls close in Rochdale by-election


Polls have now closed in the Rochdale by-election as political parties wait to see who has taken the Greater Manchester seat.

The campaign to replace Labour stalwart Sir Tony Lloyd – who died last month from leukaemia – has been fractious, with the Labour Party withdrawing support for its candidate, Azhar Ali, over allegedly antisemitic remarks.

The Green Party candidate also withdrew from the contest over contentious social media posts, while the Conservative runner faced criticism for going on holiday shortly before the vote.

Electoral Dysfunction
Electoral Dysfunction

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Meanwhile, some controversial contenders, including former Labour MPs George Galloway and Simon Danczuk, threw their hats in the ring in attempts to make a return to Westminster under a different party banner.

A number of independents are also seeking the seat, which until tonight had been a safe Labour constituency – with Sir Tony having a majority of almost 10,000 at the last general election.

All the candidates in Rochdale

  • Azhar Ali – Independent, formerly Labour
  • Paul Ellison – Conservative
  • Iain Donaldson – Liberal Democrats
  • Simon Danczuk – Reform UK
  • George Galloway – Workers Party of Britain
  • Reverend Mark Coleman – Independent
  • Michael Howarth – Independent
  • David Anthony Tully – Independent
  • William Howarth – Independent
  • Guy Otten – Green Party, on ballot paper but not campaigning
  • Ravin Rodent Subortna – Official Monster Raving Loony Party

The results are expected in the early hours of Friday morning, and Sky News’s chief political correspondent, Jon Craig, is at the count to bring you updates throughout the night.

Sky News online team will also bring you the results as they happen, so stay tuned to find out who the Commons’ newest MP will be.

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