Following the resignation of UKIP's only sitting MP, Douglas Carswell the other week, the poor showing of Paul Nuttall in Stoke and the latest
resignation of the Welsh Assembly member, Mark Reckless, who is aligning himself with the Conservative Party. I wonder just what on earth is happening
To go back a bit, When Nigel resigned, (the last time), he said one of the primary jobs of the new leader was to tackle the National Executive
Council. A group drawn from within the party that oversees the general direction of the whole show and who he had been "at war" with for years.
Dianne James was elected leader and promptly resigned. She was the most Faragian of the candidates and it's clear she was forced out by elements
within and without the party.
Next we had Paul Nuttal, who has been a massive disappointment to me. He was a great 2ic, but just doesn't seem up to the job of leader. He also
hasn't had any of the resistance from within the party that Dianne James faced and, it makes me wonder about the rumours of a Tory coup going on by
some elements of the NEC.
It's long been rumoured that certain people within the party are more Tory than UKIP and are going out of their way to damage the party's standing
in the country.
Carswell, Reckless and Evans are the three most often mentioned names and, Nige had this to say about the last, Evans, here
In my opinion, the problems within UKIP are two fold right now, there is a fifth column that is working to reduce UKIP to a protest group, possibly
hoping for favours from Tory HQ, this includes the two former Conservative MP's and Suzanne Evans.
The second part is pretty much all the fault of the NEC and is down to their inability to step back and let the leader run the party properly. I
firmly believe that Nigel wouldn't have left if it weren't for the toxicity of the NEC and they are also the main reason that UKIP's biggest
backer, Aaron Banks left.
Things are approaching boiling point within the party now, I have seen a lot of emails and such like from the local party that attest to the growing
disquiet among members. There are some who will not be renewing their membership, others that are trying to drum up support for a coup against the
NEC and still more, who are members in name only and have given up supporting the party.
Now the conspiracy.
The main fault lines are between the broadly conservative elements and the more diverse membership. We know that Reckless has been welcomed back into
the Welsh wing of the Conservative party and we can also hazard a guess that Carswell will vote along with the Conservative whip for the remainder of
this Parliament, if he does, there is a good chance he will also be taken back into the fold. What of Evans and the Tory wing of the NEC? She will
soon lose her well paid job as a MEP and will need something else, maybe she and others will be offered something within the Conservatives?
Couple of reasons, UKIP was taking huge chunks of the electorate off the Tories, making their MP's feel much less secure. (They also took big lumps
from Labour). This is what forced the referendum by Cameron.
A vote he fully expected to win, and, when he lost, instead of enacting article 50 that day (as he promised to do) “If the British people vote to
leave, there is only one way to bring that about, namely to trigger article 50 of the treaties and begin the process of exit, and the British people
would rightly expect that to start straight away.”
Instead, he promptly resigned and forced a leadership election within the Conservative party, one that saw the leading pro leave candidate
mysteriously being forced to resign when she had beaten all the others to remain the sole challenger to the pro remain candidate, Theresa May, who, we
all know, went on to become Leader of the party and Prime Minister. "Andrea Leadsom has pulled out of the race to become the next Conservative
leader, saying it is in the “best interests of the country”, paving the way for Theresa May to become prime minister."
So, after losing the referendum, The government did a shuffle with the leadership and we then had a PM who talks a good fight but was an arch
remainer before the vote went against her.
The danger of watering down Brexit would have been that many more Conservative voters would have defected to UKIP, possibly triggering a wave of MP's
to cross the floor and removing the government's majority. Maybe even causing a no confidence vote and a fresh election which could have seen serious
harm come to the party.
Now though, UKIP is in such disarray that, if she chose, May could so stymie the Brexit negotiations that the vote to leave now becomes pointless and,
she could count on almost every other MP in Parliament to support her in her decision to hold a new vote on the basis that the terms are so poor. She
can do this with relative impunity because the only people likely to stay with UKIP are Labour and Lib Dem voters who are anti EU.
So, in conclusion, UKIP is being put to the sword in order for the referendum result to be annulled (If not outright, then by some deal that leaves
this country as a functional member of all the institutions of the EU but without actually being an official member state).