I saw a tweet recently that read “Over to you Mr Farage. If you allow Labour in by the back door by splitting the Eurosceptic vote the British people won’t get a referendum” and thought it worthy of a few words.
“Over to you Mr Farage” suggests that the Tories have given up trying to woo the Eurosceptic vote, which is probably true. But what are they expecting? Nigel to give up politics (don’t think that’ll happen), or join the Tory Party (can’t see Mr Heseltine et. al. being too keen on that), or do a deal with DC (see previous comment).
And in any case, do the Tories think they have the monopoly on Euroscepticism? UKIP are picking up support from all Parties, and significantly from people with no previous Party affiliations, all of whom are concerned about the inexorable march towards European federalism. In fact a large proportion of new UKIP members are former Labour supporters as Nigel said today.
Actually the same ‘threat’ is being delivered up and down the country – Tory supporters say “vote UKIP, get Labour”, Labour supporters say “vote UKIP, get Tory”. But as tens of thousands of people know from hundreds of local elections around the country, vote UKIP get UKIP.
This sort of sentiment is simply a scare tactic, as the other Parties have run out of arguments and failed to make commitments to win back supporters. People vote UKIP for many reasons (immigration, benefits, foreign aid, opposition to HS2 and wind farms, support for grammar schools etc.) not just Europe. But on the issue of Europe they vote for us because they want a referendum on leaving the EU. No other Party is as committed to leaving the EU as UKIP and no other Party is offering this opportunity unconditionally.
In reality this kind of statement, whether it comes from Labour or Conservative, is just posturing. It is a preparing of the excuses for whichever is defeated at the next election.
David Cameron has come as far as his Party will allow with respect to a referendum, but many people don’t trust DC to deliver on his promise – especially when they don’t know what aspects of EU membership will be negotiated upon, and what will be the minimum requirements for acceptance.
When people vote UKIP it is because they believe in the Party and its commitment to Britain. The others aren’t offering the people what they want and whichever party loses the next election will only have themselves to blame.