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Nigel Farage’s new Brexit party spells trouble for the Tories

Nigel Farage's new Brexit party spells trouble for the Tories
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Not for the first time, Nigel Farage is back. The former Ukip leader is backing a new Brexit party that has today been officially recognised by the Electoral Commission. The Brexit Party plans to field candidates across the UK and in any European elections, if they are held in the event of Article 50 being delayed or postponed. In the months after the referendum, the prospects for a pro-Brexit party looked to be limited. So, too, at the snap election in 2017, when both Labour and the Tories promised to deliver Brexit. But the backlash to Theresa May's Brexit deal, Labour's Brexit contortions – and Ukip's obsession with Islam – has given a new party breathing room.

According to the Daily Telegraph, the party's main focus is to make sure 'that the United Kingdom shall cease to be a member of the European Union'. And its founder, Catherine Blaiklock, said several hundred Tory members are likely to defect – with the prospect that the number of Conservatives jumping ship could rise to the thousands. For Tories who thought the EU referendum had ended their troubles with Europe for good, the Brexit party is a sign that this was somewhat optimistic. Farage has told Guido Fawkes that he is 'ready for battle'. Given the damage that Farage's party did to the Tories at elections in the run-up to the referendum, Mr S thinks the Tories and Theresa May have reason to worry if Brexit does get delayed...

Written bySteerpike

Steerpike is The Spectator's gossip columnist, serving up the latest tittle tattle from London and beyond. Email tips to steerpike@spectator.co.uk.

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