28 May 2024

‘Reform UK will become the voice of opposition’: Nigel Farage

Senior Political Correspondent

Nigel Farage tells Paul McNamara Reform UK will win seats in the election and put pressure on the Conservatives and Labour in parliament. But he will not be fighting for a seat himself.

Paul McNamara: Realistically, do you think you’re actually going to get a single seat?

Nigel Farage: Well I do, because of this. On that Sunday morning before polling day, when families are having breakfast, brunch, whatever it is, and saying ‘which one that we hate least?’ Because that’s kind of how we tend to vote with first past the post. The realisation will be that Labour are still 20 points ahead. That it’s all over. So you might as well vote for what you actually believe in, because you know the Conservatives are going to lose.

Paul McNamara: What do you want to do? Do you want to shake the Conservatives or break the party completely?

Nigel Farage: I just want British politics to have a centre-right party that is patriotic, believes in controlling its borders.

Paul McNamara: Will that mean you or the Conservatives?

Nigel Farage: It’s difficult to say, but at the moment the Conservatives stand for absolutely nothing. They serve no purpose. They will be in opposition, but they will not be the opposition. Reform is going to become the voice of opposition. If it’s big enough, well, the Conservatives will have to join us. This happened 30 years ago in Canada. It’s not impossible.

Paul McNamara: In the meantime, though, while you are not standing, the message that you’re sending to voters is that you don’t have faith in the party. So why should they?

Nigel Farage: I could just disappear. If I was to go and say, I’m going to start. I have zero data. I don’t know a single potential voter in the seat. I’m going to spend six weeks knocking on doors. I could do that. But I wouldn’t be here talking to you. I wouldn’t be campaigning in Yorkshire, later on in the week in Lincolnshire, in Essex, and doing all the things I’m doing. I just felt I couldn’t do both.

Paul McNamara: Is it really just about that? Or is part of the reason that there’s an election coming up in the US, and you can make an awful lot of money by helping Donald Trump?

Nigel Farage: I could make a huge amount of money by emigrating to America tomorrow. You know, I’d be on talk radio shows and TV.

Paul McNamara: And that’s what you’ll be doing in a month’s time.

Nigel Farage: And I could make huge amounts of money.

Paul McNamara: Which is what you will be doing.

Nigel Farage: But I’m British and I like cricket, and bad weather, and things like that. Now I’m not going to emigrate, but will I help my friend become the 47th president of America? Yes, I will, and why? Because the world will be a safer place with Trump there. So I will spend some time there after this election is over.