I feel like I’ve written something a lot this article many times before. I probably have. Either way, it doesn’t make what I’m about to write any less true.
In the wake of Nigel Farage no longer doing his LBC gig and his subsequent announcement that he is relaunching the Brexit Party, possibly under the guise of the Reform Party, a lot of those who do not like Farage are steaming in to call time on his relevance. This reminds me a lot of when Boris Johnson stepped down as Foreign Secretary and there were all sorts of obituaries on his political career. Needless to say how that turned out in the end.
This talk of Farage being finished is extremely premature. Every single way the next year plays out gives Farage an opening to come back politically. Boris panics and asks for an extension of the transition period at the last second – Brexit betrayed, Farage gets to be the hero to the Brexity nation. Boris plows ahead with the December 31st deadline for a deal but realises in the latter half of this year that his options have narrowed cataclymiscally. He gives in to the EU on an arrangement that will keep the UK wedded to EU laws for the foreseeable future – Brexit betrayed, Farage gets to be the hero to the Brexity nation. Boris goes nuclear and we have no deal – Farage gets to tell everyone that the fallout is all Johnson’s fault; that his ineptitude is why Brexit has flopped.
There is a thought amongst liberal Remainer metropolitan types that Boris is loved by the Brexiteers. You are living in 2019, people. Since then, he’s instituted lockdown, which they hate/think is a globalist conspiracy, have huge doubts about BoJo on immigration (again, mostly successfully stirred by one Nigel Farage) and are waiting for him to deliver on Brexit in a way where expectations will never meet reality. Brexit is heaven and no actual interpretation of it will ever match the fantasy. This has always been the ditch Boris is driving toward, whether he knows it or not.
The only way Boris can politically kill Farage for good is if he goes for no deal Brexit and against all expectations it is a roaring success. That’s it. Otherwise, it is very likely that Farage relaunches this party, it scoops 7-10% out of the Tories’ poll rating and then it’s only a matter of time until Johnson is politically finished. Yes, people have prematurely written Boris off in the past, far too prematurely, as they have done with Farage. That was before Boris was prime minister; the ways to escape his current predicament rely on a massive amount of luck. Bank on Farage coming back instead, whatever you think of such an outcome. I hope I’m wrong and that Farage really is finished. But something in my gut tells me this isn’t the case.
I have a new book out now. It’s called “Politics is Murder” and follows the tale of a woman named Charlotte working at a failing think tank who has got ahead in her career in a novel way – she is a serial killer. One day, the police turn up at her door and tell her she is a suspect in a murder – only thing is, it is one she had nothing to do with. The plot takes in Conservative Party conference, a plot against the Foreign Secretary and some gangsters while Charlotte tries to find out who is trying to frame her for a murder she didn’t commit.
It’s available here:
Julian Tisi says
The difficulty for Farage this time is how does he get his platform? Thus far he’s been given constant media attention not just because he’s a good communicator and different but because this has been amplified by the fact that he’s been an elected MEP, with a good chunk of MEPs to demonstrate the popularity of his party (UKIP or Brexit). This has given the BBC for example a reason to invite him on QT. What does his party have now? No MEPs, no MPs, just 32 local councillors nationally (even the Greens have more than 10 times as many while the Lib Dems have over 2,500). The best I suspect he can hope for is that one of the tabloids (Express perhaps) gives him a column.
Farage doesn’t need a platform of the kind you describe to communicate to millions. He is one of the most famous, if not the most famous political figure in the UK. He can start a YouTube channel that would be watched by millions. In fact, this would be more effective than his LBC show given he wouldn’t be held back by any basic standards required of a licensed radio station.
As for not being on the BBC, Farage has made a career out of supposedly being shunned by mainstream outlets, even though this has rarely been the case. When the Reform Party is polling at 10%, do you really think mainstream outlets won’t interview him?
The phoenix says
First of all the PM has nowhere to go
He has to go nuclear as his base rather like Trump are too far in la la land
The knuckle draggers are English exceptionalists and we know who supports Trump
I dont have to explain you know
Farage will be cast aside with Boris as they are one and the same
You are correct if Brexit is a success then the PM wins not farage
If Brexit fails only one winner
Farage will go to being a rambling outsider on talk radio
I predicted Starmer and labour to hit 40 percent in a year
I did not expect him to do it in 3 months
Brexit failure Starmer wins election
Dave Chapman says
‘I hope I’m wrong and that Farage really is finished. But something in my gut tells me this isn’t the case.’
‘they … have huge doubts about BoJo on immigration (again, mostly successfully stirred by one Nigel Farage)’
You have to be more canny on this one. Reflect on wisdom from ‘The Exorcist’. ‘The Devil will mix lies with the truth’.
The apparently opportunistic simplicity Farage co-opts on this one is completely unattended to by the opposition. They’ve fled the field because they have no intentions of acknowledging the partial truths he spins.
The French authorities are assisting illegal immigration to the UK by means of evasion, avoidance and in more blatant cases, actual complicit assistance. Farage is able to take advantage of that because on these occasions, the footage recorded is plainly not edited for a single audience. That boatloads of people who, contrary to lazy thinking are not refugees, will only request ‘rescue’ from UK vessels while vessels belonging to French Authorities stand by at equal distance, aloof from involvement.
In parallel to that, we see idiotic headlines such as alluding to people ‘being rescued’ from France. ‘Escaping’ from France.
I’m in no doubt in progressive circles that the opportunism Farage co-opts is distasteful. On the other hand, this is one that same progressive circle is going to have to attend to sensibly, and where necessary, get its collective hands dirty over.
Thus far, they haven’t had the guts for it. I don’t believe they do for the future either. It remains territory Farage will occupy. Not through his opportunism, but due to the complicit cowardice of his opponents.