Monday, September 07, 2009

Farage vs Bercow

Better late than never, I've finally gotten round to writing my thoughts on the decision by Nigel Farage to resign as leader of UKIP and concentrate on leading the Europe of Freedom and Democracy group in the EU Parliament and stand against the ghastly Bercow in the forthcoming General Election.

I've never much liked Bercow and this was confirmed when I walked into his admin offices in Westminster to find they had stuck the front page of the Independent: '50 reasons to love the EU' up.

A couple of people have questioned why Farage has done what he's done. Isn't it just a short term stunt which will only benefit him?

No, it's not. Think about it. UKIP has been going for 15 years and since then it's beaten the Labour government and come second in a national election. It has councillors including county councillors up and down the county and has its best by election result in Norwich North recently - despite the media deciding that the fourth choice in the race was the Green party.

So where to next? If you were Nigel Farage and you'd led a group in Brussels and been the unofficial leader of the opposition in the European Parliament: you'd exposed commissioners for having a criminal record, confronted two Prime Ministers, been personally blamed for the 'NO' vote in Ireland by the Irish Prime Minister, organised demos in the Parliaments, campaigned in referendums across the continent, been threatened with arrest and personally thanked by President Klaus for his speeches during the Czech Presidency what would you want to do next?

So where is the next step for the party? Even if it was the biggest party in the European Elections 78 MEPs cannot change any legislation on their own. It's the Commission who propose the legislation and with more and more areas being moved to Qualified Majority Voting in the Council neither can a British Minister.

Coupled with that, the media do not cover what happens in the EU bar a few articles on a simple topic. There's no real coverage of speeches, of the depth of legislation and the sheer number of acts being voted on each month.

The focus is still Westminster and so for Farage to continue to push for his ultimate aim of withdrawing the UK from the European Union then Westminster is the place to be. Because no matter what happens in Brussels, there isn't the coverage and isn't the awareness of issues and the policies of other parties. And until that happens then there's not going to be the political will to allow us a vote on our own future.

Of course, given that Bercow is the Speaker and himself embroiled in the expenses scandal there will be plenty of knicker knitters who will drag up the old shite about Farage 'boasting' about his £2 million in expenses. I've written about that before but still some people can't seem to grasp someone wanting a debate about the massive cost of each MEP with a politician caught out for fiddling the taxes.

It's us against them now. By electing Bercow to the position of speaker what our MPs did was steal with one hand and with the other stick up their middle finger straight in our faces. It was a demonstration that they do not want reform and do not expect us, the voters and the paymasters, to remember or care long enough to kick them out.

So as with other high profile battles in constituencies, this one is an opportunity to get involved and send a message. And, of course, to send a man to Westminster who actually cares about what he's doing and who will put country before party.

With thanks to Tory Bear, and let's make up the t shirts:

3 comments:

Purple Man said...

Lets get him in there. Farage arising at Prime Minister's Questions would just be delicious.

James Higham said...

A lot of people are behind him, including many Tories I know. Only Cameron stands off from this. Go Nigel!

TheBigYin said...

I too would savour Nigel standing up at PMQ's. He's a great orator. As an ex labourite smoker I have now found a new party to vote for, it's a pity we can't split Nige in two.