Labour won a landslide victory in the Motherwell North by-election last week as Pat O’Rourke joined North Lanarkshire Council.
As only one of the ward’s four seats was vacant the election was held under the First Past The Post with Pat taking far in excess of the quota needed to win.
He polled 1,719 votes, second came the SNP’s Jordan Linden with 520 votes and the Conservative’s Bob Burgess just edged out UKIP’s Neil Wilson for third with 173 and 107 votes respectively.
Pat, from Carfin, said: “I’m delighted with the result and just trying to settle in a get used to the idea I am now a councillor, it’s all been a bit of a whirlwind.
“Obviously the by-election was only called due to the sad passing of Annita McAuley so this wasn’t something I was looking to happen, but I have a passion to help people from my area and that is what I aim to do.”
Pat admitted to being disappointed with only an 18 per cent turn out, but says the margin of victory shows people locally are still behind Labour.
He said: “It is disappointing at how low the turn out was, but the percentage of those votes I got is very pleasing.
“I think it’s basically the same as with Labour’s first vote share at the last local authority election and shows, at least in Motherwell North, the electorate is still backing Labour.”
Pat says he learned a bit about what issues matter to people on the campaign trail and is looking forward to learning more.
He said: “When I was going round chapping doors it was clear education was a big concern for a lot of people.
“I’m not going in blind, but I’m setting up my surgeries and look forward to learning what other issues I should be looking into.”