Last Thursday the UK Independence Party (UKIP) gained its second seat in Britain's House of Commons, the lower House of Parliament, with Mark Reckless elected in the Rochester and Strood constituency, in Kent. The victory was obtained through a comfortable, though not dramatic, majority of 2,930 votes over the Conservative runner-up Kelly Tolhurst. The majority, many say, may easily be lost again at the May 2015 general election for the UK Parliament.

This election, and especially the election of UKIP's first Member of Parliament, Douglas Carswell, with a landslide 60% of the vote, are historical events.

Both seats were won in by-elections necessitated by the fact that Mr. Carswell and Mr. Reckless, already MPs for the Conservative Party, defected to UKIP and left their seats, which they later regained with their new party.

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