Tag Archives: ukip

From UKIP to Social Democrat in the LibDems

This piece is long overdue, as I joined the Liberals Democrats back in October 2016. Since then, I have been elected Secretary of Runnymede & Spelthorne Liberal Democrats. I am also deeply involved with the newly formed (or regenerated) Royal Holloway LibDem Society.

So how does one defect from UKIP to the LibDems? I shall be frank.

I started involvement with UKIP in 2010, at the age of thirteen. This was when the party was an anti-EU pressure group. It felt outrageous and fantastically rebellious to participate in an idea that could undermine the entire establishment. When I saw the three main parties, I saw spin, snobbery and fakery. I did dream that one day something big would take down the political elite, who to me had a contempt for ordinary people and democracy.  Today, I still believe this contempt exists strongly, but now we have a situation where they are forced to listen a little bit more.

My involvement in UKIP allowed me to channel my indignation. Also, being the only young person in the room, on many occasions, allowed me to develop a range of political and communication skills that may have taken much longer to attain in another party.

However, I came to realise that the party was seriously limited: organisationally and intellectually.  There is no plan, for anything. It’s all improvisation. And if there is  someone with a plan, he/she will probably leave or get kicked out, because the party’s vested interested in keeping the party like a pressure group is too strong. It felt like what Party HQ really needed was a textbook explanation of the roles and functions of a political party on every wall, before anything serious could begin.

Posted in Op-eds | 53 Comments

Why we need UKIP in the fight for Electoral Reform

 

Pursuit of electoral reform was once a defining policy of the Lib Dems, and it remains one of the key reasons why I am a member of the party. But the disastrous AV referendum in 2011 seems to have kicked the issue into the long grass. I have the same hangups about that referendum as many other Lib Dems do. Labour’s support was non-existent; the Murdoch press spread lies; and the vote was used as a way of punishing Nick Clegg. In short – the establishment pulled rank.

One popular observation about electoral reform is that no party in Government would ever support changing a voting system which had just given them power. I don’t think that this argument is as tautological as many claim it is, but it’s certainly a major concern.

However, none of this hides the fact that voting reform has never gained much support from the general public, unlike other anti-establishment causes. Electoral Reformers are in the uncomfortable position of being hated by the establishment but treated with disinterest by the wider electorate too. It is so often seen as peripheral issue, which only middle-class policy wonks from the liberal elite can be bothered to care about (a problem which the Lib Dems are oh so familiar with).

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 44 Comments

No wiggle room for UKIP-backed Zac Goldsmith

We don’t often run UKIP press releases on here, but in this case it is justified to prove a point. Apparently Zac Goldsmith doesn’t much like being described as UKIP-backed.

Just a reminder of the UKIP statement just after Goldsmith resigned.

UKIP Chairman Paul Oakden said “On Tuesday 25th October Zac Goldsmith MP announced that he was resigning

Posted in News | Also tagged | 5 Comments

Tim Farron reacts to UKIP’s endorsement of Zac Goldsmith

Following UKIP’s endorsement of Zac Goldsmith in the Richmond Park by-election, Tim Farron commented:

Zac Goldsmith claimed Brexit has nothing to do with this by-election. The very public endorsement he has picked up from the party of Nigel Farage nails that lie.

Zac Goldsmith was already the Conservative Party candidate. Now he is also the UKIP candidate. His campaign is the Nigel and Zac show.

Posted in News | Also tagged , and | 33 Comments

Sending best wishes to Steven Woolfe MEP and his family

steven-wolfe-photo-by-european-parliament
We send best wishes to UKIP MEP Steve Woolfe and his family, following his hospitalization after an incident at the European Parliament. We wish him a speedy and full recovery.

Photo by European Parliament

Posted in News | Also tagged | 12 Comments

Whoops – there goes another UKIP leader

It’s a little known political trivia answer that Suzanne Evans was leader of UKIP for a few days in May 2015. Nigel Farage stood down after losing Thanet South in the General Election and Ms Evans stood in for three days. Then the party’s national executive commitee rejected Farage’s resignation.

Incredibly, now another UKIP leader has stood down after a few days. Diane James has resigned 18 days after being annointed by an awkward Farage non-kiss as leader.

Posted in News | Also tagged and | 19 Comments

Post-Farage UKIP and Trump’s Republicans: Populists can derail themselves, too

 

The first seven months of 2016 have seen big, consensus-upsetting scores by populist parties across Europe.

The election in Italy of two women from Beppe Grillo’s “Five Star Movement” to become mayors of Rome and Turin (the present capital and the residence of Italy’s founding Savoy dynasty, respectively) in June; the success of Dutch populists (Wilders’ PVV and the weblog “GeenStijl”) and British populists (UKIP) at two big EU-related national referenda in April and June, and the breakthrough of Germany’s racist “Alternative für Deutschland” (AfD) in three German regional elections (biggest score: 24,3% in Saxony-Anhalt) in March, all were seen as portents of big electoral upsets, threatening established party-political balances of power.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 6 Comments
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