Farage Accuses Electoral Commission of “Outrageous Act of Political Interference”

Nigel Farage has accused the Electoral Commission of an “outrageous act of political interference” for deciding to come and investigate the Brexit Party’s offices just two days before the EU elections. Farage claims that Commission had already given the party a “clean bill of health” and been invited to visit their offices last week, but the Commission said they were too busy to visit, while refusing to put their assessment in writing. A few tweets from Twitter’s resident FBPE cranks and a “powerful intervention” from Gordon Brown later and suddenly the Electoral Commission decide to drop everything and raid their offices the next day…

As Guido pointed out last night, pretty much every single political party and campaign also follows the £500 donation threshold including People’s Vote and the Labour Party, it has been a standard feature of political donations for countless election cycles. The fact that the Electoral Commission suddenly decided the Brexit Party – and no-one else – required urgent investigation over it shows that they either don’t have sufficient understanding of the law they are meant to enforce, or their investigations are not politically neutral. Or more likely, both…

Snowflake Dan Eats Humble Pie Over Brexit Party Leaflet Hoax

After sending the Caroles and Jolyons into overdrive for 24 hours (and the rest of Twitter into meme-making mode) with the claim that he’d received a Brexit Party leaflet directly inside his postal ballot, TV historian Dan Snow has now issued a grovelling apology for the obviously false insinuation. His claim just melted away…

Snow knew the game was up after New Forest District Council brutally quashed Jolyon Maugham’s conspiracising before putting out a statement with the obvious explanation that it was “likely that the leaflet was delivered on or around the same day as the postal voting pack, which is how this misunderstanding may have arisen”. Guido hopes Snow approaches his historical inquiries with a bit more critical thinking…

At least Snow had the good grace to share the statement himself, although not before the ‘Didn’t Happen of the Year Awards’ got involved, and issue a grovelling half-apology via the BBC where he admits that “of course it could absolutely be my fault and my own incompetence”. You didn’t need to be a celebrity historian to work that one out…

People’s Vote Accept Offshore Donation in Euros From Vladimir Putin

Currently Alastair Campbell is on Twitter blowing a gasket about how using Paypal foreigners could fund the Brexit Party. He is demanding the BBC cover the story. Nick Robinson this morning asked Richard Tice about it without any evidence of any foreign funding.

This site’s editor is currently sat in sunny Waterford, Ireland. He is a foreign national. He just went on the People’s Vote website and made a donation:

  1. To make the donation anonymous he gave the name Vladimir Putin.
  2. He used a Euro card from a bank based in Germany.
  3. It went through without any identity checks in seconds.
  4. The editor checked the € account online, the £1 donation cost €1.14.

Alastair Campbell’s People’s Vote welcomes offshore donations:

What is the issue Alastair?

Anti-Brexit Billboard Campaign in Massive Apparent Breach of Electoral Law

Anti-Brexit campaign ‘Led By Donkeys’ have been busy racking up the FBPE retweets for a fresh swathe of billboards they’ve put up around the country. The billboards are branded as Brexit Party adverts with a fake Brexit Party web address and feature phrases like “Attack the NHS” and “Target Gay People”. They’ve now said they’re taking down the “Target Gay People” billboard after a major backlash, Guido hears the Brexit Party are also considering legal action…

As Led By Donkeys are no doubt aware, as they’ve put a small imprint on their posters, the UK is in a regulated election period for the EU elections. Under Electoral Commission guidance Led By Donkeys clearly qualify as a non-party campaign. This means they are subject to legal spending limits:

“non-party campaigns for or against a political party, or particular categories of candidate, including campaigns on policies or issues closely associated with a particular party or category of candidates”

“Spending in the regulated period that can be reasonably regarded as intended to influence voters to vote for or against candidates or parties in the European Parliamentary elections will count towards these limits.”

Even though Led By Donkeys are yet to appear in the Electoral Commission’s database, Guido will give them the benefit of the doubt and assume they are in the process of registering. This means they have the following spending limits which have been in force from 23rd January:

Led By Donkeys have helpfully catalogued every billboard they put up between February and April, counting 255 in total. They’ve also tweeted out four new billboards which have gone up this week. On their own crowdfunder, which has raised over £400,000, they estimate the cost of each billboard at £1,000:

Even the first 8 posters which they say were “guerrilla operations” they put up themselves and around a dozen outside England, this means that by their own count they have spent well over £230,000 since January. They put up the 8th “guerilla” poster on January 23 itself, all the others appear to have been put up after this. This puts them over £70,000 over the legal spending limit and in massive breach of electoral law…

Brexit Party Could Win 9/12 Regions

A shocking new YouGov poll has found that the Brexit Party has hit 35%, a number Ed Miliband thought could make him Prime Minister. The poll sees the Tories slump down to single figures and the Lib Dems overtake Labour. ChUK and UKIP were polling so low they didn’t merit a spot on Guido’s chart

Election Maps UK has visualised a set projection for this poll, showing the Brexit Party winning every region in England and Wales except London, but even there picking up the same number as seats as the Labour Party, and even receiving 1/3 of the seats in Scotland. If the results in less than a week’s time are anything like this it would be a remarkable feat for a party that has existed for just five weeks…

Four Welsh AMs Including Mark Reckless Defect to Brexit Party

Mark Reckless and three other Welsh AMs have formally confirmed that they are joining to the Brexit Party, after Guido revealed their imminent defections 24 hours ago. You’re either in front of Guido…

The four AMs have now given official notice to the Welsh Assembly that they are forming a Brexit Party Group in the assembly, with independents Caroline and Mandy Jones joining David Rowlands, who’s quitting UKIP, and Reckless who’s leaving the Tories again. It’s the third time he’s switched party in just five years, will it be third time lucky for Mark?

Brexit Party Soars Past 100,000 ‘Members’

Guido sources tell him that the Brexit Party has today passed its goal of 100,000 people having signed up as registered supporters of the party, paying £25 each. That’s £2,500,000 raised in small donations in the course of just four weeks since the party launched. Expect the 100,000 members figure to be officially confirmed later today. Meanwhile Change UK have refused to reveal any information about donations they have received over the last two months…

The Tory Party last month revealed it has reached 150,000 members for the first time in almost a decade, but then promptly complained about it. If the Brexit Party continue their trajectory they’ll overtake the Tories in just over two weeks…

Tories Fall Nine Points Behind Labour, Brexit Party Get 10% Despite Not Being Included

Labour have opened up a nine-point gap over the Tories, according to the latest Kantar general election polling. The Tories slumped to just 25% behind Labour’s 34%. Kantar’s poll from March had a ten-point lead for the Tories – that’s a 19-point swing to Labour in just two months…

Incredibly, despite not even being included in the poll, the Brexit Party secured 10% and 4th place entirely on the basis of spontaneous mentions. No such luck for Change UK, they also weren’t included but only managed 1%. How much worse would the Tories have scored if the Brexit Party were actually included?

Four Welsh Assembly Members Expected to Defect to Brexit Party Tomorrow

Guido understands that four Welsh Assembly members will be defecting to the Brexit Party tomorrow at a rally in Merthyr Tydfil, following Mark Reckless’ announcement that he has left the Conservative Group in the Assembly today. Three independents; Caroline Jones, Mandy Jones, and Mark Reckless are expected to join the Brexit Party along with UKIP AM David Rowlands. All four were originally elected as UKIP Assembly Members before the referendum. Brexit Party sources are playing down the story for now…

The defection of David Rowlands (one of the only three AMs to still sit as UKIP after seven were elected in 2016) means that the number of UKIP members in the Assembly will drop to just two, Neil Hamilton and Gareth Bennett. That takes them below the threshold to form an official group and receive resources from the assembly. Whokip?

Blunt: Tories Must Come to Electoral Arrangement With the Brexit Party

The Tories are waking up to the stark reality that they face electoral annihilation at the hands of the Brexit Party unless something dramatically changes – and that is not a customs union deal with Corbyn. A new Prime Minister is just the start…

Crispin Blunt set out the basic facts of political life on Newsnight last night – this Parliament will not let Brexit through, this makes a General Election inevitable, without some sort of electoral arrangement with the Brexit Party the Tories are going to be decimated. In terms of maximising the numbers of pro-Brexit MPs, the logic behind a ‘Brexit Alliance’ is there. Can Nigel Farage really be talked down if the momentum stays firmly behind him, or will megalomania be the order of the day? He wants to “change politics for good”, that may mean to him the end of the Tories…

Tory MPs’ Brexit Party Tease

Fair to say that some Tory MPs seem more worried about the rise of the Brexit Party than others, Alan Duncan has gone into panic spinning mode against Farage, more level-headed sorts like James Cleverly are pointing out that the Tories should be asking why their voters are switching rather than vilifying them. Some don’t seem to be too upset at all…

Nadine Dorries praised Nigel Farage’s “fantastic interview” on Marr yesterday, Henry Smith told his local paper that Farage was a better leader than May. Lucy Allan hit back at Duncan’s Marr outburst, having already shared the Brexit Party’s election broadcast the day before:

It’s not the first time Allan’s approvingly shared Brexit Party content, while her Conservative-themed cover photo has also recently disappeared from her Twitter profile and ‘Brexit’ has appeared in her bio. Talk of defections is a bit premature but it’s hardly surprising that many Leave-supporting MPs are ashamed to be Tories right now…

Brexit Party Takes 18 Point Lead, Tories Slump to Fifth

The latest YouGov poll for the European elections shows support for the Brexit Party growing even stronger, up 4% from their previous position. Meanwhile Labour is collapsing and the Tories are almost down to single figures, and the Lib Dems have continued to squeeze CHUK to irrelevance. Since the European Elections have been held under proportional representation, no party has ever got more than 33.5% of the vote. The Brexit Party look like they could smash that record…

Brexit Party Unveils Election Broadcast

Gavin Esler’s “Village Idiot” Politics Live Meltdown

Gavin Esler’s big moment on Politics Live today severely backfired after he accused the Brexit Party’s Martin Daubney of lying over whether Esler had called Brexiteers “village idiots”. Which he had.

Even Will Self-style theatrical finger jabbing couldn’t save the Brexit-deranged former BBC presenter from a cringeworthy retreat. Glorious television…

Esler also tried to go after the Brexit Party for not revealing one of their donors, conveniently forgetting that his own party hasn’t revealed any of its own donations either since the end of March. Change UK are withholding publishing any donations they’ve received in the last two months until after the European Elections. Guido looks forward to seeing who else has given to the hapless Tiggers…

Mad Remainer Files Official Complaint that Brexit Party’s Logo is Too Good

The stark contrast between the Brexit Party’s slick, professional branding and The Independent Group/Change UK’s neverending horror show has been the source of endless amusement. Unfortunately, some Remainers are failing to see the funny side, one mad FBPEr has had such a severe sense of humour failure that he has filed an official complaint about the Brexit Party’s logo. For being too good…

Richard Bentall #FBPE, who is apparently also a professor of clinical psychology, wrote to the Electoral Commission to complain that the Brexit Party’s logo was an arrow – which funnily enough is next to the voting box for them. “In my professional opinion,” he splutters, “the ballot paper confers an unfair advantage to the Brexit Party.” The only thing giving them an unfair advantage is Change UK’s chronic incompetence…

Jewish Brexit Party Candidate’s Business Vandalised With Giant Swastika

Lance Forman, a top Brexit Party MEP candidate and owner of H. Forman and Son smokehouse, has had his business vandalised by vile anti-Semitic graffiti. Forman’s father is a holocaust survivor who fled Germany after the war and his great grandfather fled the anti-Semitic pogroms in Russia. That he now has to face this is beyond horrific.

Politicians of all colours should be condemning this.

Farage Announces Parliamentary Candidate Selections

The Brexit Party this morning announced that it is now actively recruiting new MP candidates for a future general election. This morning it launched a new section of its website for potential candidates to apply. They’re charging £100 per application for admin and vetting…

Also revealed at today’s eventful press conference…

  • The Brexit Party pledge card
  • There have been an extra 3,000 registered supporter signups overnight, taking the total number to 88,000
  • The party will push for a WTO Brexit
  • They will demand Brexit Party MEPs “have a major role in the Brexit negotiations”
  • There has been serious interest by “local and national figures” in standing for the party in the Peterborough by-election. Documentation needs to be in by 16:00 on Thursday…
  • Farage himself won’t stand in Peterborough
  • 90% of Brexit Party funding has come from donations of £25 and under
  • Farage is now in talks with Tory donors about funding a Brexit Party general election campaign
  • Arron Banks has not given any money to the Brexit Party

And finally, Farage shut down a question from The Guardian over Farage having appeared on the conspiratorial InfoWars website by reminding the paper of its own wannabe Alex Jones. “I think when it comes to crackpot conspiracy theories, you’re way, way ahead of me.”

Stewart Jackson Rumoured to be Brexit Party’s Peterborough Candidate

Rumours are swirling about Westminster over the Brexit Party candidate for the upcoming by-election in Peterborough abounds – it just so happens the Brexit Party are holding a large rally in Peterborough tonight. Although there is speculation that they’ll hold off for electoral spending reasons, can Nigel resist the opportunity for a big set-piece announcement?

Names have been bandied about from Annunziata Rees-Mogg to Farage himself. The name Guido has been hearing is Stewart Jackson…

Jackson was Tory MP for Peterborough from 2005 to 2017, he then became David Davis’ chief of staff after losing to Fiona Onasanya by just 607 votes. Last week he denied he would be standing for any party in Peterborough, although he’s been more coy with Tory MPs when they’ve asked him directly. He has certainly been showing some leg with his recent tweets:

  • “Devastating poll shows 40% of Tory councillors back the Brexit Party”
  • Claire Fox explains why she’s standing for the Brexit Party
  • “Dear Leavers, Lord Adonis doesn’t want your support, but my Brexit Party certainly does” from Farage himself
  • “Tories will vote in droves for the Brexit Party” just yesterday

Guido hears that some eurosceptic Tory MPs have been seriously mulling a defection to the Brexit Party after the EU elections. If Jacko moves first it could start a chain reaction, on the other hand would Brexiteers really want to lose their say over next Tory leader?

UPDATE: Jackson has poured cold water on the chances of him becoming the Brexit Party’s candidate. Farage says the candidate will be announced in the next 24 hours or so…

Brexit Party Takes Clear 6 Point Lead

We are now in the kind of territory that we have not seen since the days of the SDP. The Brexit Party (28%) is polling ahead of Labour (22%) and polling more than double the vote share of the Tories (13%). The Tory party chairman Brandon Lewis was pleading this morning for Tories to vote Tory.  This is the high price of failing to deliver Brexit.

Brexit Party Unveils Seven New Candidates

Today the Brexit Party announced a further seven candidates for their election:

  • Louis Stedman Bryce
    • Investor and businessman.
  • Lucy Harris
  • Martin Daubney
    • Journalist and commentator, former editor of Loaded Magazine.
[…] Read the rest


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Quote of the Day

Change UK MP Joan Ryan tells Change UK’s South West ‘rally’:

“Can everyone look at their hands please?”

*everyone holds out their hands in front them*

“That’s it, it’s there, the future is in your hands.”


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