UKIP Uncovered
What motivates the leaders of the United Kingdom Independence Party?

Tuesday, August 26, 2003 

Comment on 'Ballot Box Blackmail'

A great amount of information regarding the attempt to obtain one to two million pounds from the Tories for not running UKIP candidates in certain constituencies at the last general election has been posted on this blog in a somewhat scattered manner.

It would seem worthwhile pulling some of this together and perhaps drawing some conclusions and levelling the blame. First, however, more background this time with thanks to the editor of EU Facts, Figures and Phantasies, Christina Speight, for this valuable trophy from a trawl of her files:-

TEBBIT SPEAKS HIS MIND ‘Ballot Box Blackmail’

'I find it astonishing that the United Kingdom Independence Party should be working so hard to help New Labour win the next Election, dump the pound and take us further into a Euro Republic. Its leader [sic], Nigel Farage, wants £1 million (for a start) to call off his candidates fighting strongly Euro-sceptic Tories and concentrate on hard-core Euro fanatics instead. In Teignbridge the UKIP threatens to run a candidate against Eurosceptic Tory Patrick Nicholls whose majority over the Euro fanatic Liberal Democrat Party's candidate is only 281 votes. The idea that UKIP, which polled 1,600 votes in 1997, could find well over 20,000 more next time to win is absurd.

But their candidate could take enough votes to give the seat to the Lib-Dems. I am surprised the UKIP has not asked Mr. Blair, Mr. Kennedy and the European Commission for money. After all, they will be the beneficiaries of the UKIP's campaign against Tory (and Labour) Eurosceptics'. {Mail on Sunday 4/2/01}

The Mail on Sunday thus joined with the Daily Telegraph in heaping the blame on Nigel Farage. The Times in its reporting, and possibly for reasons of its own, divided the blame between Lord Pearson, Lord Neidpath, Jeffrey Titford and Nigel Farage.

In its two articles of 2nd March 2001 it describes how the plan was conceived on the Scottish moors where the two aristocrats were hunting deer in September 2000. The scheme was finessed that December in London and was conveyed by telephone call to Nigel Farage who according to The Times‘ reporter Andrew Pierce ‘telephoned Jeffrey Titford, a fellow MEP and party leader. He deputed Mr Farage to negotiate because he had known Lord Pearson for years through membership of organisations such as the Bruges Group.’

According to that reporter the list of MPs to not face UKIP competition was discussed on the telephone, together with the money on 15th December by Farage and Lord Pearson. A list of MPs 'devised by UKIP' was subsequently faxed to Lord Pearson for his approval. In our view UKIP'S GOOSE WAS THEN COOKED and the reputation of the then entirety of their MEP representation was totally sunk! News leaked out in the 'Commons tea rooms' and the plan was, inevitably and so sensibly squashed, by the Conservative Party Leadership.

Could this have been a cleverly contrived plan to neutralise UKIP as an electoral threat in the following election? That certainly seems to have been the result whether intended or not.

How is it that the two UKIP MEP’s, who allowed the reputation of the Party to be thus so totally soiled, are still in senior positions in the party to this very day, and in the case of Nigel Farage still wreaking untold havoc upon its organisation, structure and morale. Preparations should have immediately begun to seek high profile and upright replacements for their constituencies in the 2004 EP elections, with as low a profile as possible for the two publicly shamed MEPs in the interim.

In reality in these two regions UKIP actually proposes running these individuals as their lead candidates in the European Parliamentary elections next June. Can those in charge of the party not appreciate the absolute abhorrence ordinary voters and party members must feel at this disgusting scam to put cash ahead of principle. Do they need to see it everywhere expressed during next years Euro-elections campaign and subsequently demonstrated in the absence of UKIP votes in the ballot boxes across the country?

Why, when the scheme had so clearly failed, did Titford and Farage force events to the ludicrous extreme of then actually fielding candidates against the likes of John Redwood, Patrick Nicholls etc. The clear fact is that these two men, as demonstrated in the Video Copyright case are not only lacking in scruples and political nous, they must also be bereft of any plain, down to earth, good old-fashioned common sense! This plain fact cannot possibly be concealed during a hotly contested election campaign. UKIP had the proof in both the general election and the two local election campaigns that followed. But still the MEPs cling on to their power and a pretence of stature, destroying the eurorealist cause in the process.

But why, oh why!, did (and does?) the ever subservient and ineffectual NEC go along with this suicidal policy?

posted by Martin |11:30 AM
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