As parties lined up their prospective candidates to fight June’s General Election, the question that always comes around at such times was asked: would former UKIP Oberscheissenführer Nigel “Thirsty” Farage be standing, and if so, where? Would he have another go at Thanet South, hoping that the Tories might not blow so much money so brazenly on retaining the seat this time, or would he look elsewhere?
Squeaky €6,000 a month finger up the bum time
The opportunity to get himself into Parliament at the eighth time of asking had to be seized, didn’t it? We soon found out: former Tory, then UKIP, and now independent MP Douglas “Kamikaze” Carswell decided he would not be defending his ever-shrinking majority this time. Nige’s pal Arron Banks, who admitted he knew nothing about the Clacton constituency, decided he would therefore not stand.
So the way was clear for Mr Thirsty to seek out new pubs (surely “voters”? - Ed) in his quest to land the prize that had eluded him for so long. What say you, Nige? “It would be a very easy win and for me, a personal vindication to get into the House of Commons after all these years of standing in elections”. Fine. So he will stand in Clacton?
Er, no he won’t. “If I compare the platform I have in Strasbourg to being a backbench MP, there is frankly no comparison … The Brexit negotiations will take place in Brussels and the European parliament will not only have a large impact on them, but ultimately will have the right of veto on any deal at the end of the two-year process”. Oh just f*** right off. As if Farage does any more than turn up for the expenses and to make trouble.
When he says “I believe I can use my profile in European politics to put real pressure on MEPs to vote for a sensible deal with the UK”, all that will be heard in Brussels and Strasbourg is hollow laughter. Farage, as we saw when he claimed the Portuguese elections in 2015 had been some kind of EU coup, hasn’t got the faintest idea what is going on in the rest of the EU, and nor does he pretend to. So why isn’t he standing?
Nige's message to all those UKIP voting mugs
Ah well. As so often, this comes down not just to cowardice, but greed. As Politico has pointed out, if Farage serves as an MEP until 2019, he will have put in 20 years’ service (yes, I know, that’s “for some value of ‘service’”). This will entitle him to a full pension of around €6,000 a month. But if he had stood in Clacton, and won, he would have had to give up being an MEP, with his pension entitlement reduced accordingly.
As with his decision to take up the offer of a weekday show on LBC, and also become a regular pundit for Fox News Channel (fair and balanced my arse), there is only one item on the Farage agenda, and that is the generation of More And Bigger Paycheques For Himself Personally Now. Wanting a good deal for his country on leaving the EU? He couldn’t give a flying foxtrot. He’s all right Jack, and blow you all.
If the Daily Mirror’s chicken wants someone to take the piss out of, the target is clear. Nigel Farage is not just a coward, but a greedy sponger to boot. No surprise there, then.