The Greens came second, only narrowly ahead of the English Democrats. The candidate Labour was tacitly backing, Jill Saward, came sixth with a miserable 492 votes, 29 fewer than Miss Great Britain.
Here is the full result...
David Davis (Con) 17,113 (71.56%)
Shan Oakes (Green) 1,758 (7.35%)
Joanne Robinson (English Democrat) 1,714 (7.17%)
Tess Culnane (National Front) 544, Gemma Garrett (Miss Great Britain) 521, Jill Saward (Ind) 492, Mad Cow-Girl (Official Monster Raving Loony) 412, Walter Sweeney (Ind) 238, John Nicholson (Ind) 162, David Craig (Ind) 135, David Pinder (The New Party) 135, David Icke (Ind) 110, Hamish Howitt (Freedom 4 Choice) 91, Christopher Talbot (Socialist Equality Party) 84, Grace Astley (Ind) 77, George Hargreaves (Christian Party) 76, David Bishop (Church of the Militant Elvis) 44, John Upex (Ind) 38, Greg Wood (Ind) 32, Eamonn Fitzpatrick (Ind) 31, Ronnie Carroll (Make Politicians History) 29, Thomas Darwood (Ind) 25, Christopher Foren (Ind) 23, Herbert Crossman (Ind) 11, Tony Farnon (Ind) 8, Norman Scarth (Ind) 8
I didn't stay up for the result, which was delayed until 3am by a recount demanded by one of the fringe candidates, but left of centre civil liberties campaigner Anthony Barnett from Our Kingdom did. He was disgusted by the BBC coverage. Sounds like my decision to go to bed was good for my blood pressure...
[BBC] coverage of the count was an utter disgrace and will for the moment serve this angry viewer as a symbol of its appalling conceit and incompetance. It lost the sound when the Sherrif read out the results. Anyone could have run forward with a microphone to make sure they could broadcast Davis's acceptance speech. They didn't. Nor was their hapless reporter ordered forward with his own mike. Listen to Davis at his moment of triumph? Hear what he had to say about the issue? No need for THAT. The BBC knows all, and it knows that we do not need to worry about liberty while it can call in its license fee. Not only did we have the reporter then talking over Davis - he did not even have the curtesy to report to us what he was saying even though he could hear him. This farrago was followed by one of the most prejudiced leading question I can recall. Without any serious opposition, and indeed with voters pissed off by the sheer amount of idiot candidates, Davis got a fantastically high turnout in the circumstances. In 2005 the current Labour government only got 22 per cent of the total electorate. By my calculation Davis has got 27 per cent tonight. In other words he represents a significantly higher proportion of his electorate than Gordon Brown does of Britain's. So what does the BBC do? From the studio in London it asks, "Were all of his voters really voting in support of civil liberties?" Oh no, says their local lackey, in a clearly primed exchange. "I spoke to Conservative voters who said they did not agree with Davis but because they respected him and the way he was making a stand they were voting for him". The quotes are not exact, they accurately convey the exchange. It was clear, even though the turnout was deemed "respectable" (BBC for a triumph the Corporation disapproves of) we are not allowed to interpret it as people agreeing with Davis! You see, his success does not mean anything at all. If they had not voted for him it would have shown that the BBC was right and people did not care about civil liberties. If they do vote for him it shows that they don't care either - they just support his maverick integrity. Either way, no effort whatever is to be made to let listeners hear what the newly re-elected MP for Haltemprice and Howden has to say.
PS: The web arm of Britain's corporatethought managed to pull off the patronising view of Davis to perfection, headling the outcome as "Davis cruises to b-election win". It could almost have been "glides". No resistance, no effort, no story.
Mike Smithson of PoliticalBetting.com agrees...
The BBC showed once again with their minimal coverage of the count and lack of analysis that they have abandoned their case to be funded by a tax enforced by all the apparatus of the criminal law. Covering the electoral process at work should be the first priority for a public service broadcaster and they failed miserably. Sky, by all accounts, was so much better.Seeing as the BBC didn't feel it necessary to bring you David's speech at the count, let me provide the public service they should have...
First, may I thank the returning officer, his officials ad the police. I would also like to take the opportunity to commend the other parties that contested this election. One of the freedoms I defend is the right of anybody to stand in a democratic election. By and large this has been a courteous and entertaining campaign. I thank everyone for taking part. Four weeks ago, I resigned my position as Shadow Home Secretary, and Member of Parliament. Not for personal gain. Not for political advantage. But to defend a principle. The doubters said it couldn’t be done.So, let's turn to the question which ConservativeHome tried to answer a day too early. Was it worth it?
You can’t win a by-election campaigning for freedom. You can’t shift public support for 42 days.
You can’t spark a national debate, they said… people just don’t care about British liberty. And yet, 3 weeks on, we’ve sent a shot across the bows of Gordon Brown’s arrogant, arbitrary and authoritarian government. We’ve galvanised a new consensus … across the political spectrum … beyond the world of politics. A new resolve. A new spirit of freedom. A fresh sense of purpose.
Today, the people of Haltemprice and Howden have delivered a stunning message to the government…as our campaign has reverberated across the country. Four weeks ago as Gordon Brown stooped into the gutter to rig the vote on 42 days, Ministers crowed that 69% of people supported 42 days. Today just 36% support it. Four weeks ago, the government touted public support for a range of other draconian measures. Today, 71% support my stand against the attacks on British liberty. And in the House of Lords, the last Head of MI5 savaged the government’s 42 day proposal. It now lies in tatters, robbed of any remaining credibility. Along with this government. And that’s after just 3 weeks.
But today is not the end of this campaign. It’s the beginning. On Monday I return to the House of Commons, to take up my seat in those hallowed chambers. I do so with a clear mandate to fight Gordon Brown’s vision of ‘Big Brother Britain’ tooth and nail. To stop 42 days dead in its tracks.
To prevent the disaster of ID cards before it happens. To protect our personal privacy from being ransacked by the ever-intrusive state. But most of all for the thousands upon thousands who have written to me… Supported me…and voted for me….
I return to fight for those fundamental freedoms that define our way of life. The freedoms that millions died defending. The freedoms that make Britain Great.
I made no secret of the fact that I would rather David Davis hadn't done what he did. Like all his other close friends, if I had been asked for my opinion before he resigned, I would have counselled against it. He knew that. It's why he didn't talk to any of us about it. I respect that, even though I continue to believe it was a wrong decision. I also respect the fact that he sacrificed his political future for a cause he passionately believes in. There's no way back to the Shadow Cabinet and he knows it.
One result from this by election is that it has demonstrated the growing disconnect between the Westminster Village and the rest of the country. So-called expert commentators dismissed Davis as 'bonkers', 'going through a mid life crisis' or worse. The rest of the country saw a politician standing up for something he believed in, willing to make personal sacrifices for the cause. Whether they agreed with him or not, they liked a politician who strayed from the norm.
David Davis's aim was to spark a national debate. He may not have got quite the debate he wanted, but there have been acres of media coverage of the issue which would not have happened if he had not stood down. It has made some previous advocates of 42 days think a little harder about their support for the measure. It has brought together a rainbow alliance of people from across the political spectrum in a way which might not have happened before.
The whole campaign will have made it just that little bit harder for Gordon Brown to get this measure through the rest of its parliamentary stages. For David Davis, that will have made it all worthwhile. For me, well, I sit here thinking what a damned shame it is that a supremely talented man won't now be in the next Conservative Cabinet.
More on the by election...
Andy Sparrow - Seven conclusions
Liberal Conspiracy - Analysis
PoliticalBetting - Was Nick Clegg DD's big mistake?
Anthony Barnett - Canvassing in H & H
Glyn Davies - DD is a hero
Robin Lustig - A national debate?
Cassilis - What DD did and didn't do
Andrew Grice - DD 1 Labour 0
Danny Finkelstein - DD & baldrick's cunning plan
UPDATE: I have also written a piece for Comment is Free HERE, looking at the fallout fron the by election.