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Friday, 8 June, 2001, 21:03 GMT 22:03 UK
Election aftermath in quotes

BBC News Online rounds up the most memorable soundbites as Labour repeats its 1997 landslide at the 2001 general election.

As foreign secretary, I have spent little time in the House. I am glad I will be back at the centre of Commons debate

Robin Cook on his new job as leader of the House

Today looks like the nail in the coffin for the Good Friday Agreement

Democratic Unionist Ian Paisley Junior at the North Antrim count

Typical of the honesty, integrity, determination and courage that he has shown throughout this campaign

Tory chairman Michael Ancram on William Hague's resignation statement

William Hague worked tirelessly from start to finish and so it's a particularly sad moment for him, and also for Ffion and for the rest of us. But, my friends, make no mistake. The Conservative Party will be back

Lady Thatcher

It has been a remarkable and historic victory. But I am in no doubt as to what it means. It is a mandate for reform and investment in the future and it is also an instruction to deliver.

Tony Blair, Prime Minister

No man or woman is indispensable. No individual is more important than the party.

William Hague, Leader of the Opposition

Having fought a campaign in terms of honesty and being straightforward and putting quality and fairly-funded public services at the centre of our appeal we must make sure that that message is taken to the floor of the House of Commons.

Charles Kennedy, Lib Dem leader

The Tory party is about to tear itself apart in a battle over its soul.

Lord Ashdown, former Lib Dem leader

I believe that the scale of our victory and the wide margin between ourselves and our opponents reflects not just that we have won the battle of votes but the battle of ideas.

Gordon Brown, Chancellor

It is the most enormous triumph for Tony Blair and for this Labour government to have got the landslide victory that we have, to have got the renewal of the mandate to continue the policies and to reject what William Hague had on offer.

David Blunkett, Education Secretary

We have got a government in power where nearly half the population have chosen not to vote. They are not representative of the British people.

David Handley, Farmers for Action chairman and former Peoples' Fuel Lobby leader

I feel that Labour has such a stranglehold on the country that it now has carte blanche to do what it likes. That is a real disappointment.

Garry Russell, Dump the Pump campaign organiser

William has had to endure a degree of personal vilification that a lesser man would have been unable to endure. He has borne it with humanity, dignity and good humour.

Francis Maude, Shadow Foreign Secretary, on William Hague's resignation as leader

He has suffered a tremendous defeat and he has made that decision... His party must now decide how they deal with the election of a new leader. We delivered and that's why we got the vote. It's quite an emphatic one.

John Prescott, Deputy Prime Minister, on William Hague's resignation as leader

He is a young, fit man of obvious ability and I'm amazed that he didn't have the resolution, the fortitude - not the selfishness - to say, 'I'm going to put everything I've got into it. If I have to go down fighting, I'll go down fighting, I'd rather do that, I'd rather die in the line of duty than take any other option.'

Neil Kinnock, former Labour leader, on William Hague's resignation as leader

In making it clear that he is resigning and therefore is not a candidate, he has removed any sense of disloyalty which might have attached to challenges from his former colleagues.

Steve Norris, Tory vice-chairman, on William Hague's resignation as leader

I do not think that this is the time to be speculating on the succession, that will come in due course.

Ann Widdecombe, Shadow Home Secretary, on whether she would be running for the leadership

If you ask the basic question who is the most popular Conservative in the country, Ken Clarke is the answer to that. If you ask who is the most popular among Conservative activists, he is not.

Michael Heseltine, former Tory Deputy Prime Minister

We have got to do a lot of thinking and I hope to play my part in that and it is the thinking that matters more than the people.

Alan Duncan, Tory trade and industry spokesman, on William Hague's resignation as leader

I know he is a man of strong personal judgment and determination and he makes up his mind and he does what he thinks is right and he does it quickly.

Lord Brittan, former Tory minister, on William Hague's resignation as leader

I think it would not have been possible for him to have been a kind of caretaker leader, the fight would have been for who was going to succeed him.

John Maples, former Tory minister and victor in Stratford-on-Avon, on William Hague's resignation as leader

If we don't get this rethink of strategy right then it's possible that we'll drift further away from the mainstream of British politics and the Liberal Democrats would love to take our place.

Ian Taylor, Conservative victor in Esher and Walton

They underestimated Hartlepool and they underestimated me because I am a fighter not a quitter.

Peter Mandelson, former Labour cabinet minister, on being re-elected


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