General Election puts spanner in launch of The Patriotic Alliance

David Lawrence - 20 04 17

He also put pressure on current UKIP leader Paul Nuttall, stating that Nuttall has “six weeks to prove himself hasn’t he, it’s just as simple as that”.

Farage’s comments lend further evidence to speculation that he is deliberately undermining UKIP and manoeuvring himself to lead The Patriotic Alliance (TPA), the new far-right movement planned by former UKIP donor and Leave.EU executive chair Arron Banks, a close ally of Farage.

Farage stated on BBC Radio 4 this morning that he will confirm whether he will be contesting the South Thanet seat in the next “couple of days”, claiming that, as a current UKIP MEP, he needs to “weigh up where am I best to be in terms of having an impact on Brexit” between Strasbourg and Westminster.

Banks, who quit UKIP in explosive style last month, had initially scheduled the launch of TPA for the day after the May local elections, calculated to capitalise on UKIP’s haemorrhaging membership following their expected wipe out. However, the General Election has put a spanner in the works and the launch of TPA, which is expected take more extreme messaging on immigration, could be postponed until after 8 June.

Multimillionaire Banks has announced he will contest the Clacton seat currently held by his arch-enemy Douglas Carswell MP, who left UKIP last month after years of bitter infighting with Farage and Banks over UKIP’s increasingly xenophobic immigration policy.

Banks met yesterday with Nuttall and Farage to discuss whether he will stand in Clacton as a UKIP candidate, despite the deliberate campaign waged by Banks in recent months to divide the party. Carswell announced today that he will not be standing for re-election in Clacton.

Whether or not Banks stands for UKIP in June, the launch of his new party is poised, and Farage looks set to lead it. Farage will know that turning on the party he helped build in the run up to general election would be seen as a betrayal by many of his supporters.

Little is certain right now, but Farage’s comments this morning suggest that Farage is lining UKIP up for failure in the hope that they bomb so badly that the need for an alternative – in the shape of Banks’ TPA – is obvious.


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