Nigel Farage throws weight behind new Brexit Party
The former Ukip leader said he would be prepared to stand for the new party in European elections if Brexit is delayed.
Nigel Farage has said he will stand for the new Brexit Party if the UK’s departure from the European Union is delayed.
The Brexit Party has been officially registered with the Electoral Commission allowing it to field candidates at upcoming elections.
Former Ukip leader Mr Farage said the new party “has my absolutely full support” and he would stand for it in May’s European Parliament elections if the UK has not left the EU by that point.
The new party was a “live vehicle” which could be “mobilised” if Brexit is delayed.
Brexit is due to take place on March 29 but Mr Farage said that if MPs “kick the can down the road” by extending Article 50 “then logically we would have to fight European elections and I would certainly stand in them in those circumstances”.
He said the registration of The Brexit Party should be a warning to MPs considering backing any effort, such as the move championed by Labour’s Yvette Cooper and Tory Nick Boles, to extend Article 50 in order to allow more time for negotiations.
MPs considering such a move “need to be aware there could be a very serious electoral threat to them”.
The party’s founder Catherine Blaiklock told the Daily Telegraph that “a number of hundred” Conservative members had been in touch to say they wanted to defect to the new party and the figure was likely to rise to thousands.
Mr Farage said the party would attract support from across the political spectrum, with people now increasingly identifying along Leave and Remain lines rather than by affiliation to the Conservatives or Labour.
He told the Press Association: “If the need comes for the Brexit Party to be mobilised, I think it will draw support from across the entire spectrum.
“I genuinely believe people would be very surprised at the support it would attract.”
He added: “There is a live vehicle there from which to fight back.
“There are many millions of people out there at the moment feeling disenfranchised completely, feeling that they are more Leavers, or Remainers, but feeling they are more Leavers than they are Labour or Tory supporters and this would give them a focus.”
Ms Blaiklock told the Telegraph: “Never in peacetime has such a betrayal been attempted by this treacherous Conservative government.
“No country has ever signed a treaty like this except under war terms.
“This is a wake-up call.
“We are going to have thousands of people who will just leave the Conservatives and vote for us in the event of the European Parliament election.”
Mr Farage quit Ukip in December 2018 saying he was uncomfortable with the direction of the party under Gerard Batten.
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