Nigel Farage says he WOULD make an election pact with the Tories but only if Boris Johnson proves he will push through No Deal Brexit by Halloween
- Tory donors have been pushing for election pact with Nigel Farage’s new party
- Mr Farage suggested he would do a deal if Boris Johnson pushed for clean Brexit
- PM-in-waiting Mr Johnson has played down the prospect of pact with Mr Farage
Nigel Farage today opened the door to a general election pact with the Tories – but only if Boris Johnson commits to a clean Brexit by the end of October.
The Brexit Party leader softened his stance against an arrangement that could stave off the threat from Jeremy Corbyn in dozens of seats across the country.
Tory donors are believed to be pushing for an agreement that Mr Farage’s fledgling party will not split the vote by running against Eurosceptics. In return, the Tories could stand aside in northern metropolitan areas where the Brexit Party has a better chance of defeating Labour.
Mr Farage said earlier this week that he did not ‘trust’ PM in-waiting Mr Johnson enough, but now says he could support him if he takes a tough line on Brexit.
Nigel Farage (pictured outside No10 earlier this month) has softened his stance against a pact that could stave off the threat from Jeremy Corbyn in dozens of seats across the country
‘If Boris said ‘right, we’re ditching this terrible treaty, it’s the worst deal in history, I made a terrible mistake in voting for it, we’re ditching it’,’ Mr Farage said at an event hosted by The Telegraph last night.
”We’re giving Europe notice – we’re leaving on the 31st of October on WTO (World Trade Organisation) terms.
‘We’re going to do our utmost to make sure that in terms of terms of aviation, transport, the Port of Dover there is as little disruption as there possibly can be’ – then you might spring them into action and they might offer some sort of tariff-free deal.
‘And if Boris did that, and he was prepared to go to House of Commons to be voted down, to lose a motion of confidence, to go the country on a general election on that ticket and with the support of people of like me – he would win a massive, thumping majority.’
Mr Farage added: If he was prepared to do that of course I’d want to work with them, of course I’d do that.’
Earlier this week Mr Farage said of the idea of a pact: ‘I can understand why they want to buy me off but the lack of trust means it’s not up for grabs.’
It came as a new poll showed that almost half of Conservative members would be happy for Mr Farage to lead their own party.
Some 46 per cent of members surveyed by YouGov for the Times said that they would be happy if the former Ukip leader joined the party and landed the top job.
However, Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson today warned against a pact with Mr Farage.
Mr Farage said earlier this week that he did not ‘trust’ PM in-waiting Boris Johnson (pictured during a BBC TV debate last night) enough, but now says could support him if he takes a hard line on Brexit
‘To win the next general election we don’t have to become the Brexit Party, make an electoral pact with them in certain seats, or offer a coalition in Parliament,’ he said in a column for The Telegraph.
‘We have to respect the referendum result and leave the EU, as we said we would,’ she added.
‘Doing a deal with the Brexit Party would be an admission of defeat. And we’re not dead yet.’
Mr Johnson has played down the idea of a pact, with his ally James Cleverly telling BBC Radio 4’s Today programme this week: ‘I can’t see that is something he would want to do and it is not anything he would need to do.
‘He is able to win elections with Conservatives and Conservative support. He didn’t broach electoral pacts in London and I can’t imagine he would need to broach electoral pacts at this point.’
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