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Friday, September 16, 2016

Does badly split UKIP face an existential crisis?

It is hard to know who has come off worst with the defection of UKIP's fomrer head of media, Alexandra Phillips to the Tories.

Is it UKIP who have lost a key figure and who are characterised by her as having become more “aggressive and testosterone-fuelled” and racked with in-fighting in the latter period of Nigel Farage's leadership?

Or is it the Tories, whose leader and Prime Mininster stands accused of having delivered on all key elements of UKIP’s 2015 election manifesto “within a matter of months” of David Cameron's resignation. So much so in fact that they allegedly leave UKIP with few places to go in policy terms.

The Guardian publishes a warts and all interview on Phillips' seven years in Ukip:  

Speaking before her former party’s annual conference at which a successor for Farage will be elected on Friday, Phillips said that
The characterisation of Neil Hamilton as cross between Machiavelli and Rasputin appeals to me and no doubt will ring true for Nathan Gill too. The question is will Gill follow Phillips into the Tories as UKIP continue to self-destruct?

She says of Hamilton: “There is one particular character – a former Conservative minister – who has the ability to always be circumstantially close to bombs going off. I can’t vouch for the fact that he causes those destructive occurrences ... but whenever there is a crisis happening, something leaked or a disaster here or there he is always lurking around in the shadows like a Machiavellian Rasputin character.”

Phillips believes that a surge in membership for the Tories, with 50,000 people joining over the summer, is coming largely from UKIP deserters. When combined with predictions of a major split once the party's new leader is announced this afternoon and admissions by senior figures of deep splits within UKIP's ranks, it is clear that they are facing an existential crisis from which they may not recover.
AFAIK Hamilton never was a cabinet minister
Indeed. It was a direct quote from the paper.

God help us if UKIP get near to controlling the levers of power in this country.

Firstly, Nathan Gill, the Welsh leader (appointed by Farage, not elected via the ballot box) leaves the UKIP group and becomes an Independent AM, yet, remains a loyal UKIP MEP. At the same time one of his trusted advisers, Alex Phillips, jumps ship, and joins the Tories. UKIP Wales is a 'war zone' she declares. Despite this she remains a media adviser to Nathan Gill.

Secondly, yesterday UKIP elect Diane James as new leader to replace Farage. Neil Hamilton, (who supported someone else) is officially the leader of the Welsh UKIP AM group, yet is today denied a 15 minute speaking slot at the UKIP conference, by order of the new leader.

Who gets the honour to replace him ? Yes - Nathan Gill. See first point.

How on earth can you trust a bunch of squabbling, out of control, ego-maniacs, with the task of governing our country ? They seem incapable of running their own political party, yet alone anything else.

Carry on with the great work Peter. This is an important story that needs to be aired.

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