Express & Star comment: Does Nigel Farage's general election plan equal Brexit?
Nigel Farage loves nothing more than giving the establishment a bloody nose.
He did it with Ukip, garnering massive support across the country in local and national elections before driving home the Leave vote in the 2016 EU referendum.
He did it again this year, forming the Brexit Party from scratch and then landing more than five million votes in the European elections just a few months later.
Time and time again he confounds his critics, and when it comes to the art of political manoeuvring, you could argue that there is no one better.
However, his insistence on standing hundreds of candidates in the upcoming general election will be seen by many as a serious error on his part.
Smarting from Boris Johnson’s refusal to form a so-called ‘Leave alliance’ to fight for a clean break Brexit, Mr Farage has now unveiled a huge team that he says will make a real impression at the ballot box.
It is a move that is certainly not popular with everyone in the higher echelons of the Brexit Party.
And many candidates are clearly confused as to why they are standing against Conservatives who have backed Brexit in the Commons at every opportunity.
Mr Farage says his party will “hurt” Remain-backing parties, citing the damage that Ukip did to Labour under Ed Miliband in 2015.
But he fails to acknowledge how much politics has changed since then.
The majority of those Ukip votes went to the Tories in 2017.
There is no doubt this time around, Leave supporters face a direct choice between the Brexit Party and the Tories.
Indeed, there are several seats here in the West Midlands where even 1,000 votes for the Brexit Party could hand Labour victory.
Conservative supporters will argue that only a Tory government with a majority can deliver Brexit.
A Remain alliance headed by Jeremy Corbyn would, they say, put an end to Brexit once and for all – which raises questions about why Mr Farage is taking this path and what he really wants from this election.