Within hours of the party he has forged in his own image record its best ever results in local elections, if reports are to be believed, Nigel Farage has demonstrated yet again his complete lack of strategic thinking – which may arrest UKIP’s momentum and cost him essential votes from wavering Labour and Lib Dem supporters.
Having spent the election campaign delivering the message that UKIP offers something to Labour and Lib Dem voters who are unhappy with EU membership and the ongoing net influx of migrants, Farage has perhaps supped a few too many pints while posing for the media and, according to the Daily Wail, informally
offered entertained the idea of [edited to reflect observations in comments] an electoral pact and coalition with the Conservatives as long as they drop David Cameron.
In many ways it’s not news because he’s said it before. But in doing so now, just after making a comparatively major advance, Farage has blinked figuratively and shown weakness when he should be portraying strength and confidence. Compounding this political illieracy Farage has also undermined UKIP’s apparent appeal as an entity that stands apart from the discredited three main parties; for instead of occupying the high ground above the political class in the eyes of jaded voters he has instead signalled his desperation to join with them.
What was supposed to be an insurgency designed to break the mould in British politics is now being revealed to those less schooled in the ways of Farage to have an altogether different aim. UKIP candidates who enjoin voters to reject the Lib-Lab-Con will now have to explain why given UKIP’s plan is to cosy up to the Conservatives. As Richard eloquently explained yesterday to the Campaign for an Independent Britain, we are no further forward.
In the final analysis what this means for voters, desperate for a change to the political system and for this country to become democratic, is that real change is not on the agenda. Farage’s objective is to be part of the political equivalent of the Royston Vasey community, which will result in the Lib-Lab-UKIP-Con. Clearly the message to voters is that this league of gentlemen is a local bubble for local politicians and there’s nothing for us ordinary people here.