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Douglas Carswell has decided Cameron will squander his EU reform opportunity

28 August 2014

As well as saying his decision is regrettable and counterproductive, the other Tory response to this morning’s shock defection by Douglas Carswell is to point people to instances where Carswell has said that only David Cameron as Prime Minister in 2017 will guarantee a referendum.

In April, he wrote on his Telegraph blog:

‘In order to exit the EU, we need David Cameron to be Prime Minister in 2017 – the year when we will get the In/Out referendum, our chance to vote to leave the EU.’

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Suggesting he is inconsistent is at least a little more nuanced than smearing him as a ‘headbanger’. But what Carswell’s defection today tells us is that he doesn’t actually think that referendum will be worth it anyway. He has clearly decided that Cameron is going to squander the opportunity to reform that a referendum presents. And that is a serious charge.

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  • global city

    Cameron is not squandering his EU renegotiation….he does not want any substantial change…or any change at all if he was honest. THAT is what Carswell has finally accepted.

  • ChrisRobinson

    It’s good to see the Tories in disarray. Anymore defections will split the rightwing vote. UKIP are just a fruitcake rump of old Tories (at least Cameron got THAT right!), trouble is, NONE of the political parties offer solutions except cuts and more cuts. They expect us to pay for the failure of THEIR capitalist system.

    Our trade unions (6 million strong still) should stop giving Labour our money and form our own leftwing socialist party and implement policies that will benefit the millions, not the millionaires – build more homes, aim for full employment with decent living wages and full-time permanent contracts, invest in public services and introduce a fairer, progressive tax system, close all tax-dodging loopholes. It’s not about RACE, it’s about CLASS.

  • Rifleman1853

    Cameron’s “EU reform opportunity”? What reform opportunity is that? It’s a myth dreamed up by Cameron to buy himself enough time that the EU will be run on the QMV system before the referendum is due to take place – which means that, regardless of the outcome of the referendum, the EU will be able to outvote us on every point – and possibly even prohibit the referendum from taking place at all.

    Have you already forgotten what happened in Greece, when their president proposed a referendum on economic measures inflicted on the Greeks by the EU / ECB / IMF? They deposed the president, and took fiscal control of Greece. It couldn’t happen here?

    Yes – I’m sure the Greeks thought that, too . . .

  • davidofkent

    David Cameron has no intention of holding a referendum IMHO. He will persuade the EU to return some meaningless powers to the UK and then declare that he has achieved such a lot that we would be stupid to hold a referendum and risk all that.

  • Peter Stroud

    The last paragraph in the above article, says it all. Can any of us trust Cameron?

  • MirthaTidville

    tell you what Dave…close the door on your way out…

    • Alexandrovich

      And before he does he should familiarise himself with the light switches.

  • Robert_Eve

    Serious but true.

  • Neil

    I don’t understand this at all.

    I’m sure someone will correct me if I’m wrong, but I was under the impression Douglas Carswell wished to leave the EU regardless of any negotiation settlement? On that basis surely he would have been better off fighting to secure a Conservative majority such that will be a referendum and then trying to win the out vote? Indeed, if he thinks Cameron can’t deliver on EU reform then won’t that work to the advantage of the out campaign?

    To my mind he has traded the opportunity of a referendum to secure secession for a reduced possibility if any referendum at all.

    Can anyone explain this?

    • Torybushhug

      Neil he’s become resigned to the fact Cameron will accept only modest EU reform and that mass immigration will continue. Time to take a stand, more will follow.

      • Neil

        That still doesn’t make sense. If he wants to leave the EU then Cameron securing only modest reform would be an advantage because it strengthens the out case in a referendum. If Carswell favours remaining in a reformed EU then why has he joined UKIP when they stand on a platform of out at all cost.

        Also, Carswell has advocated an economic need immigration policy, not a doors shut policy. I don’t see how the two are consistent.

        I still don’t understand this move.

        • HookesLaw

          The fact that you have not got an answer shows there is none. The only pretend answer is ‘boo hoo Cameron will not actually call an election’ Which is no answer at all. The real truth is that the bozos don’t want a referendum.
          They are not even interested in the EU anymore except in so far as it assists in being hateful to foreigners in general and anyone dusky skinned in particular.
          The allegedly ‘libertarian’ Carswell makes a joke of himself in joining UKIP.

          • MirthaTidville

            You mean just like you make a joke of yourself on here

        • Sam_Beresford

          Douglas Carswell made it clear why he defected: he doesn’t think the Tory leadership is serious about the promised renegotiation. As he said in his speech – advisors told him they wanted the “bare minimum” of reform to make sure enough people would vote to stay in the EU. He thinks this is disingenuous and not in the national interest. Hence why he would not support a “modest reform” – why paper over the cracks in a house if the foundations are shaky.

          Also, I would point out that UKIP have never advocated a “doors shut” immigration policy – they want a skills/experience based points system similar to that in Australia.

          Finally, he’s probably calculated that the more pressure on Cameron the harder he will have to negotiate something. Who can seriously deny that we are not having all this talk of a renegotiation because of UKIP? Cameron and co resisted it until they realised they needed a bolder move to try and halt UKIP’s advance. Doesn’t that overwhelmingly say a) the leadership are weak b) UKIP are the music makers on the EU and c) the Tory leadership doesn’t actually believe what they are doing?

          That’s really why I stopped supporting the Conservatives and voted UKIP in may, and will do so again next year. Carswell has clearly come to the same conclusion.

          PS. Message to the Tories: Stop banging on about ‘Vote UKIP Get Labour’. It makes no electoral sense and completely misunderstands why people have joined UKIP. The more I hear it, the less likely I am to ‘come back’

          • Neil

            On immigration I stand corrected. Thank you.

            As to the reasons for defecting, this still makes no sense. If Douglas Carswell wants to leave the EU, which is my understanding, then the best way of achieving that is to have a Conservative government post 2015 such that there is a referendum. If Cameron negotiates “the bare minimum” then this strengthens the out hand as they can present it as an establishment stitch up. Thus Carswell is closer to achieving his aim of a referendum vote to leave the EU.

            If Cameron negotiates something substantial (ending free movement of people and ever closer integration for example) then Carswell will be adversely effected because it would make an in vote more likely in a referendum.

            If Carswell wants to remain in a reformed EU, and hence is concerned by the lack of serious reform attempts, why has he joined thee party that wants to leave at all costs?

            The only thing that makes sense to me is that he doesn’t think Cameron would hold the referendum,but we are surely beyond that point? There would be all out anarchy if he didn’t follow through.

            I’m afraid I see this as a bad day for the cause of leaving the EU as a Conservative government is less likely than it was yesterday and no one has yet to convince me otherwise.

            • Sam_Beresford

              Well I guess he’s probably decided that he doesn’t want to be part of a situation where the leadership negotiates a “bare minimum” and then campaigns and puts pressure on Tory MPs to support an ‘In’ vote.

              I would also dispute that the idea that only a Tory majority will deliver a referendum. It’s undoubtedly because of UKIP that we are in this position at all; isn’t the solution to make sure that UKIP aren’t a flash in the pan, and have some MPs to keep the pressure on at Westminster? In terms of the idea that a vote for UKIP is a vote for Ed Miliband, the problem is that the numbers don’t add up: at the polls currently UKIP and the Tories combined are at about 48% – the Tories haven’t done that well since the 1950s. That of course means that plenty of non-Conservative voters and new voters are voting UKIP – hence why they do well in places like Rotherham.

              I guess the point is that UKIP is – is trying to be – a new force in British politics. Its important to point out that Carswell’s defection speech outlined many cultural and philosophical differences with the Tory leadership – it was about more than the EU, which of course UKIP is also.

              See here:

              • Neil

                Now we are getting somewhere.

                Regardless of how and why it happened, a conservative led government is the only way of having a referendum before 2020.

                UKIP aren’t going to form a government and can’t deliver a referendum before 2020.

                Your point about UKIP trying to be a new force interests me. I think you are right and it therefore isn’t about the EU at all. What is in it for Farage for the UK to leave the EU before establishing himself and UKIP as serious political players? Nothing.

                It is for that reason that I don’t think Farage wants a referendum, why he wouldn’t do an electoral deal and why he would like Labour to form the next government.

                On that basis I think you are also correct that threatening UKIP supporters with being somehow complicit with electing a labour government won’t work.

                I do think this is the start of the split of the right, mainly on social issues rather than economic, but I think it is important to note that the EU referendum will be a casualty of that realignment.

                • Sam_Beresford

                  I agree that the UKIP surge is about far more than the EU, but the EU is still the core of the movement, and why people are voting for them.

                  In response to your point about the Tories delivering a referendum: it is not the only way to get it. UKIP’s aim is to get a “clutch” of MPs in Westminster and hold the balance of power, so that a referendum is part of any deal. Cameron May have promised a referendum but he promised one on the Lisbon treaty and didn’t deliver; he promised the right of recall and didn’t deliver; he promised open primaries and has pulled back from them; he promised to get the deficit down and has failed to do so. I could go on. All this is in Carswell’s speech by the way. So why should anyone trust him to deliver a referendum in 2017?

                  If he wanted a referendum he could call one in this parliament, and of Labour and the Lib Dems blocked I the could at least point to them as the cause of blame. But he’s failed to do that. Why? I can only conclude that he doesn’t want one, that by promising one in 2017 he is trying to kick the issue into the long grass and hope it goes away

                • Neil

                  And how many years will it take UKIP to get a clutch of MPs? 30 years?

                  Let’s say Carswell holds in the by election and 2015. I think Farage will win but who else will?

                  Winning seats will he incredibly difficult without an organised ground operation. Even with a few more Tory defectees the right will be in a net zero position as all UKIP gains will be at the expense of the Conservatives.

                  I can see UKIP polling well in the north and midlands but nowhere near enough to win a seat.

                  so that means that chance of a 2017 referendum slips away.

                  I don’t have any objection to trying to build a new political movement. Good luck to you, but if your primary motivation is leaving the EU then you are throwing away the best chance you are going to have for a long time.

                • Sam_Beresford

                  Well we aren’t going to agree on this, so I will leave you with a couple more thoughts.

                  First, UKIP’s chances. If you look at the Ashcroft constituency polling UKIP are ahead in Thurrock & South Thanet, neck and neck in Great Yarmouth and strong challengers in Grimsby, Boston, Rotherham. In fact, they are strong challengers in large parts of the country – a strong showing could see them pick up seats in the South East, South West, East Anglia, Yorkshire – North Wales maybe.

                  This may seem overoptimistic – even fanciful. But it has happened before under FPTP: the Reform Party of Canada came from nowhere to become the official opposition in the early 90’s. I don’t think this will happen in 2015, but a Westminster breakthrough? Certainly. And we live in unprecedented times: who could have predicted the rise of UKIP 5 years ago, or the Scottish independence referendum, or the Eurozone crisis (well Eurosceptics did of course, but on this scale?).

                  But this is kind of beside the point. In fact, UKIP to a great extent represent a rejection of this kind of politics: why not just vote for the party you want? Why accept second best, and thereby of course prolong the hegemony of those you dislike in power? Why are we stuck with this two part system, and saddled with this parasitic westminster elite?

                  To come back to your point about the referendum: many, many people don’t believe the Tories will deliver. As I pointed out in my last post, they have promised and failed to deliver on a whole host of policies. The big one is of course the Lisbon treaty referendum, which was utterly cynical. And being in coalition with the lib dems is no excuse – they could have put something on the table, and if it didn’t get a majority (which it well might, given some Labour defections, NI parties etc) they could at least say ‘we tried – give us a mandate next time’. But they didn’t – because the leadership at least don’t believe in it. So why should anybody believe the promises now?

                  Finally, I would say this: UKIP, as Carswell has recognised, want to change politics in Britain. They don’t want us to be run by a bunch of schoolboys who are in power because of who they know rather than what they know; they are sick of emotional blackmail and manipulation, used as weapons by the left (this is why the whole ‘UKIP are racist’ agenda fell flat), they aren’t afraid to grasp the nettle of difficult problems like immigration – and think through what needs actually to be done, and commit themselves to it. If you agree with these things, and think the Conservatives and other parties have failed to address them, isn’t the question: why don’t you support UKIP?

                • Neil

                  Sam, we aren’t going to agree but I’m glad we can have a good natured debate on the subject.
                  I’m aware of the polling but personally I think UKIP’s figures are soft. As I stated before, I think Farage will win and Carswell will hold but I can’t see anyone else winning notwithstanding more defections. I do think UKIP will poll strongly throughout a lot of England and they can use it to build a base, win councils and, for them, hopefully gain more MPs in 2020.
                  I absolutely agree with you that you should vote for who you want; I’m not trying to persuade you otherwise. I was merely pointing out that the only chance of having a vote on the EU in 2017 is a Conservative majority. If building a new party is the critical thing then fine, it is a sacrifice to be made, but if someone’s vote is dictated solely by wanting leave the EU then they should vote Conservative in my view.
                  On whether Cameron will hold the vote or not, I personally don’t think he has a choice. If he formed the next government and then didn’t have a vote he would be lynched. He isn’t going to want to be deposed, which he would be, and he wouldn’t want to be known as the leader who split the party. I’m sure he would prefer to stay in the EU but the more powers he repatriates the better chance he has of winning the referendum. The fewer he repatriates the better chance of out winning.
                  On the Lisbon Treaty, he should never have made the promise. It was rammed through Parliament already in a different form so what would a referendum have achieved? It would have consumed the 5 years of his term and I understand why he did it. Personal incentives matter here. He was trying to avoid a fight he didn’t have to have. The 2017 referendum is less of a fight than promising it and not delivering. For me it isn’t a case of blind faith but inevitability.
                  As for me, I don’t support UKIP because the most important thing to me (fiscal policy) is virtually non-existant. Such that it is seems to have been slapped together on the run without serious consideration.
                  Furthermore, some of the UKIP positions I find illiberal and contradictory. The tone of the immigration debate at the Euro elections was unnecessary (though not all of it UKIP’s doing), but you either believe in free markets or you don’t. How can you believe in free enterprise and the free movement of capital but not the free movement of people?
                  I know there is a policy review taking place and I shall certainly read it. Right now I won’t be voting for UKIP.

                • Sam_Beresford

                  Interesting to read your thoughts. Thanks Neil, all the best

        • Lady Magdalene

          Cameron is copying the Wilson strategy in 1975.
          Get a few p!ddling concessions. Talk them up (with the connivance of the EU, Merkel and the BBC) so that they sound significant.
          Hold a Referendum that is anything BUT free and fair ….. with the (EU funded) BBC cheerleading for an IN vote, together with the tame pro-Conservative media.
          And when he gets a mandate to keep us IN from the gullible and (when it comes to the EU) poorly educated electorate it will be game over for the UK. Our Sovereignty will be transferred in perpetuity and we will never be permitted another vote to change our minds.
          The ONLY part of Cameron’s speech in Jan 2013 offering a Referendum which was worth listening to was when he admitted that “the mandate for the EU is wafer thin.” Actually it’s thinner than that …. they don’t have one. And that’s what he’s been told to rectify.
          Carswell has finally admitted that Cameron is hoodwinking the Tory EUsceptics.

          • Neil

            I would suggest calling the electorate thick isn’t the optimum political strategy.

            This still is an inadequate explanation of why Carswell defected. He believes in direct democracy and, by definition, the wisdom of the electorate.

            The only possibility of leaving the EU is the 2017 referendum. Why wouldn’t all eurosceptics work towards securing that vote?

            • Conway

              Because we don’t believe that Cameron intends to hold a referendum and that, if he’s forced into it it will be an in/in plebiscite. Should that fail and we do vote to leave, he is on record as saying that he would not want to take us out. Carswell has just confirmed all our suspicions.

              • Neil

                How could he not? If Cameron forms the next government and doesn’t hold a referendum then the party will split and the government will fall. It will be a crashing personal disaster for him.

                He hasn’t choice but to hold the referendum. He can’t ignore the outcome either without the same happening sinister sonar views would be irrelevant in the event of an out vote.

                Carswell didn’t say he thought there wouldn’t be a referendum but that Cameron would do the “bare minimum” to win it. That is the dream scenario for the out cause because the best chance of winning is to present cosmetic renegotiation as an establishment stitch up.

                I genuinely don’t understand this. I want a vote on the UK’s continued membership of the EU and the only offer is the 2017 referendum from a conservative government. There is no other option on the table.

                Euro sceptics should work towards winning a conservative majority, hope for cosmetic changes only and then fight hard to win. It is the only way to leave the EU for a generation.

                • Neil

                  I know it says sinister sonar. My ipad auto-corrected to that and then disqus wouldn’t let me edit.

                  It should say, “since his views…”

        • Holly

          Once Cameron has got his ‘renegotiation’ malarkey out of the way, and ‘sold’ it to the electorate as some ‘great new dawn’ in Britain’s continued membership, and the ‘IN’ camp wins, we will be trapped for generations to come.
          We will then, over several decades, be slowly dragged further and further in until we ditch the pound and have to use the Euro.
          By that time Cameron, Miliband, Clegg and many others will be long gone from UK politics, hoovering up taxpayers money somewhere sunny.
          This is the fickle hand of fate giving us plenty of ‘eye-openers’ so we can make the right choice.
          Look at it as a great conjunction.

    • HookesLaw

      No. He is bonkers. The politest thing to say is he is a nihilist. I’m not sure that does any of us any good.
      More than ever before a vote for UKIP is a vote for Miliband.

      • Jacques Strap


  • Bert

    I must admit that, whilst obviously an election tactic, Camerons’ offer of renegotiation plus referndum seemed a good idea.
    Carswell has always come accross as a man of complete integrity and if he has lost faith then I am shaken.
    The pitiful thing is that this makes it more likely that Miliband will get in by default and we are stuck with the status quo.

    • lakelander

      I agree with what you say but Carswell’s change of party also makes re-formation of the British right much more likely. We will have to wait a little while for that, however.

  • fathomwest

    Mr Carswell has shown great support for Cameron because he believed in him. However he has seen the light. He has been told some truths that have made him make this courageous decision.
    The Conservative leadership have shown how moribund they are by giving out statements made by Mr Carswell. For people will read them and realise that something has occurred to dramatically change his mind.
    Frankly a win win for UKIP.
    Cameron, by the way, will show his petulance by his words and actions over this. The man has no ‘class’.

    • Callan

      Indeed. Peter Hitchens named Cameron Mr. Slippery and Melanie Phillips described him as “the man in the empty suit”. Take your pick.

  • Torybushhug

    Conviction politics at long last!
    I’m a life long Tory who’s just decided come what may UKIP will get my vote, it’s time to end the ruination of once magical England groaning at the seams from rising migration. The roads are full, the hospitals cant cope, house demand catastrophic and no amount of building will make a jot of difference as any new resource adds to the magnetic pull on migrants.
    Then there’s the rapid increase in chemical and intensive farming to keep us all in food.
    Little magical market towns across the SE are being forced to rapidly expand and loose their charm, villages are becoming conjoined, wage compression is very real, we’re all sick of immigration and want no more, not a sinlge soul.
    If you are being persecuted change your nation, stand up and fight like the English did, stop running away. Your nation needs you more than we do.

    • HookesLaw

      Voting UKIP is not going to end anything – it will begin even more years of socialism.

      • MirthaTidville

        when you going to realise Dave is a lying toad of a liability

      • Torybushhug

        Great change comes with risk and a fight. I for one am prepared to accept these costs.

      • Lady Magdalene

        Nothing will change if we don’t vote UKIP. Under Common Purpose Cameron we’ve had BluSocialism
        There’s hardly a scrap of difference between LibLabCON because the EU rules.

      • Jacques Strap

        Mass immigration is soaring under the tories…..

  • LadyDingDong

    Up until this morning I was convinced that the Conservatives would win in 2015 given the absolute ineptitude of Labtard but now I am resigned to a Milliband-led disaster. The only true Conservatives have been Gove and IDS – I would have included May until the piss-poor response to Rotherham and the latest immigration figures and the weakness of the government’s attitude to ISIS. I will not waste my vote on a UKIP that can never govern so it’s emigration again I am afraid just as I did in 1977. Oh for a true Tory with balls like the great Lady and not milksops like Cameron and Hague.

    • Torybushhug

      Be a conviction citizen, vote UKIP, if enough of us do this we have a chance of getting UKIP into some sort of position of greater influence, lets go for it, abandon the tories in droves, things must change, the time has come.
      Only this ship abandonment and declining poll results for Cameron will jolt them into meaningful decisive action on immigration.

    • fathomwest

      So you would rather a milksop, to use your description, Cameron to be re-elected rather than give UKIP a real chance? Ridiculous.
      You go to your second, or third, home and let the country go further down the sewer. Thanks a lot.

      • LadyDingDong

        A lot of you kippers are very nice people but some of you are like the SNP nutters who believe with an almost religious fervour akin to our Islamic friends. I am not about to change a lifetime true blue conviction because of Cameron, anymore than I did because of Heath. UKIP have no chance but you are too thick to understand why so resort to insulting me on my preference to not live in, or pay for, a socialist EU dependency. And criticizing my second, or third home, without recognizing my fourth, betrays you for what you are, a Ukip socialist sockpuppet.

        • JimHHalpert


    • Holly

      You will not be voting Labour I presume.

      • LadyDingDong

        I would eat my own child, without salt, before I would put a cross against a Labtard’s name. How could you even dare asking me such a provocative question give my current state of mourning for Conservatism?

        • Holly

          I simply asked because if you genuinely wanted someone ‘with balls’ you would switch your vote to UKIP.

          Did you ever go blackberry picking in your youth?
          If so, you know just how important each blackberry is in order to make the blackberry pie.
          Your vote is just like those Blackberries, and it would not be ‘wasted’. It would be just as important, and more importantly, it would count.
          Saying you will leave the country is even more worthy of shame than staying at home on election day.

          Mourning for Conservatism my bum. It has not died, or gone away, it is everywhere you look, it is what everyone is talking about…
          Cameron is the problem, not Conservatism, or the Conservatives per se.
          Look at the backing IDS has had from the taxpayers.
          Look at how Cameron’s poll rating went up when he stood up to Europe, or spoke in a manner more befitting the party he leads.

    • HookesLaw

      Dingdong – do you really think the nation is queuing up to vote UKIP? It is not. Vast swathes of the country will eat their own liver rather than vote UKIP and if you think Carswell is going to persuade them you are delusional. Carswell a right wing Tory is not going to encourage labour voters to UKIP. Where will they flock? Thats easy. Labour or Libdem – in the first instance probably Labour. If the right wing vote splits it will let in Labour.

      Still if the received wisdom is that this is terrible for the Tories and labour are going to win the next election then it makes a iScotland NO vote more likely.

      • LadyDingDong

        I know I will regret responding to you but…did you actually read my post? I will not vote Ukip and neither will the vast majority of real Conservatives; but enough will to let Milliband and his band of idiots into power. I agree with a lot of what Ukip have to say but they are never going to be a governing party and much as I like the kippers here, their enthusiasm, much like the SDP’s did, will fail to translate into significant seats. It is an absolute tragedy that the party chose that weak social democrat Cameron to lead them, but you of course, being his kindred spirit, can stand defiant in the knowledge that he, and his fellow travelers, have wrecked the party we should all love.

        • John Spindler

          They can’t rule now but if enough give UKIP support you break the status quo…they can effect change…and in one or 2 terms they will have a consolidated powerbase…the lib dems will likely disappear (a shame but clegg and co are far removed from the lib dems of the early part of the 20th century who did so much for the common people) the conservatives will go into infighting and blood letting and have to change….yes Millipede will create a mess beyond believe in 1 or 2 terms….there just is no other way or to keep the status quo and slide deeper into the abyss and likely revolution…yes that is a real possibilty….because the politicians are so devoid of empathy for the general populace and in such a bubble it will take violent disorder to shake them from their ivory has happened before and it can happen again….

  • Denis_Cooper

    “Douglas Carswell has decided Cameron will squander his EU reform opportunity”

    Why the future tense?

    When, if ever, will the Spectator acknowledge the existence of that radical EU treaty change that Merkel demanded in late 2010 and that Cameron simply agreed to give her without asking for any other treaty changes in return?

    The treaty change that was formalised as European Council Decision 2011/199/EU of March 25th 2011, here:

    and which was subject to a virtual media blackout at the time?

    As he squandered that EU reform opportunity, and got away with it, why should anyone expect that it would be any different in the future?

  • starfish

    Welcome to the club of non-believers
    It is indeed a serious charge – and makes one wonder whether others will follow
    Cameron is in serious trouble

    • Holly


  • JoeDM

    Well done Carswell !!!!

    • John Dalton

      Hear hear! Let’s hope there are still some in the Tory ranks who have some principle and patriotism and that Carswell is only the first! Well done Mr Carswell!

      • ChrisRobinson

        Like the UKIPpers, Tories, LibDems and Labourites have NO principles, it’s all about feathering their own nests. We need a new party to represent ordinary working class people.

    • telemachus

      Well done indeed
      Carswell has single handedly put the result next May beyond doubt
      On a personal level he has morally debased himself by joining the ragbag of racists and inadequates
      In this regard I hope Clacton give him his deserts

      • Adam Carter

        He has resigned and is putting his decision to the voters.
        He has taken the moral high ground.

        • telemachus

          Joining the racist party

          • greggf

            Racism is the new Left tele, certainly in Rotheram and many other places…….

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