Asked if he would back Douglas Carswell or Arron Banks in Clacton, Nigel Farage replied: “it doesn’t take much working out“. Farage was twisting the fish knife at a hurriedly called Fishing For Leave press conference this morning, attacking “posh boy” Carswell:
“He should have gone in 2015, he’s been sabotaging… We’ve got a new leader of UKIP who needs to be given a chance… If the MP is doing you harm, you’d be better off without him… Quite why Douglas joined the party when he disagrees with the policies I don’t know. “
Farage denied he was the party’s “backseat” leader and joked the infighting in UKIP is “almost as bad as in the Labour Party.” Around 30 hacks were lured hook, line and sinker on the promise of a Farage appearance, only to hear Owen Paterson lengthily outline the future of British fishing after Brexit. An important issue to be sure, not a big draw for the media crowd in SW1…
Meanwhile Michael Heaver, Farage’s former spokesman, says of Carswell’s “infiltration” of the party: “Forget U.K.I.P, it was more K.G.B“. Carswell has been summoned by Paul Nuttall to meet UKIP’s chairman this afternoon…
UPDATE: Fightin’ talk from Arron Banks: “We will have a high street shop in Clacton, professional agent appointed soon and I will be rolling my sleeves up.”
UPDATE II: Team Carswell say he is “supremely relaxed”.
UPDATE III: To which Banks’ sidekick Andy Wigmore responds: “Bollox [sic] old wonky jaw is toast”.