Sunday, March 26, 2017

UKIP: gradual disintegration rather than collapse

I got home yesterday afternoon from a bit of Lib Dem video filming in Teeside, switched on the news to watch any updates about the Unite for Europe march in London (I wasted my time with the BBC but Sky News covered it) and discovered that UKIP are no longer represented in the House of Commons. Their sole MP, the semi-detached Douglas Carswell, has taken too literally the meaning of "Independence" in "United Kingdom Independence Party" and has launched his own departure from the party of fruitcakes to sit as an independent.

I don't expect this independence to last. He's clearly heading back towards the Conservatives. Whether or not he is able to find some loophole in his past statements that will help him avoid a by-election is still to be seen, but I expect Carswell to be boosting the Conservatives' Commons majority in the not too distant future.

The defection leaves UKIP in a perilous state but they are not dead yet. Beware the dangers of writing death certificates for opposing parties. UKIP is disintegrating before our eyes but a rump will continue for the foreseeable future, despite the best efforts of Theresa May to ramraid UKIP and steel their worst right-wing policies. Though UKIP has no presence in the Commons, they continue to have a presence in opinion polls. In effect, they are a depository of right wing protest votes and that sustains their poll ratings.

So, enjoy the continued spectacle of UKIP infighting and disintegration as it will last for some time yet.

1 comment:

Nigel Hunter said...

As far as I am concerned the BBC has been taken over by the enemy (conservatives) Has not their new boss woman had conservative leanings? This could permeate through the organisation.leaning to the right?