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Nigel Farage Risks a ‘Toynbee Moment’, But He’s Probably Right.

Ed Milliband MP speaking at the Labour Party c...

Scary: OK Ed, it's all up to you

Nigel Farage, at the UKIP conference yesterday, was reported to have said something less than critical of RMT chief Bob Crow. This cardinal sin among right-wingers was committed when he pointed put that the two of them hold similar positions on the EU, and that Nigel welcomed that.

Now we all know that these spur of the moment utterances (I believe he was responding to an audience question) can sometimes be taken out of context, and that a better prepared speech or article would have perhaps phrased things differently. Mentioning Bob Crow may give potential UKIP supporters second thoughts and it is unfortunate to mention his name when UKIP’s most fertile recruiting ground is disaffected Conservatives.

It reminded me of the infamous quote from Greg Clark, now a junior minister in the DCLG, when he referenced Polly Toynbee in suggesting that the Conservatives should focus on relative rather than absolute poverty.

Of course one difference between then and now is that Greg Clark wasn’t, and is unlikely ever to be, leader of his party. The more important difference is that Nigel Farage’s comments are probably right.

If the unions turn in favour of an EU membership referendum, and possibly even ‘properly’ eurosceptic, then the odds will be on seeing a referendum commitment in the next Labour manifesto. That, along with 60% or more of Conservative members wanting out, will mean that ironically it could be Ed Miliband who will make the referendum happen, even if only indirectly.

(Picture licence: Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic)

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2 responses to “Nigel Farage Risks a ‘Toynbee Moment’, But He’s Probably Right.

  1. Pingback: A New Democratic Revolution Is Sweeping Northern Europe – Nigel Farage « News Worldwide

  2. Pingback: Nigel Farage: the Euromystical Eurosceptic « The Epinoiasphere

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