In an interview with The Times on Friday, Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage accused four party defectors of plotting against him since Boris Johnson replaced Theresa May as Conservative leader earlier this year.
“Never underestimate human greed and stupidity. They rode off my back. They’ve been planning this ever since Boris Johnson was elected,” he pointed out.
The remarks came a day after MEPs Annunziata Rees-Mogg, Lance Forman, Lucy Harris and John Longworth announced their resignations from Farage’s party, urging its supporters to now switch their votes to Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Conservatives.
Here are the four Brexit Party quitters / defectors - Annunziata Rees Mogg, John Longworth, Lucy Harris, Lance Forman pic.twitter.com/QfjFE1Wz2W— Dan Bloom (@danbloom1) December 5, 2019
Explaining their decision, the MEPs asserted that if the Brexit Party competed in Labour-held constituencies against the Tories then they risk “splitting the ‘Leave’ vote and allowing a Corbyn coalition into government.”
Farage was quick to state that he was “disappointed” over the four’s move, while a Brexit Party spokesperson noted that “one of the [defected] MEPs is the sister of a cabinet minister [Jacob Rees-Mogg], another has a partner who works in the office of the same cabinet minister, and yet another is a personal friend of both Boris Johnson and Michael Gove”.
Farage’s Friday remarks come after his interview with the BBC, during which he specifically upheld his party’s performance in the election campaign.
“In a sense, what we did, was to create Boris Johnson and a narrative that in 2017 had been 'Brexit means Brexit' and now it's 'Let's get Brexit done',” Farage claimed, adding that his party’s decision not to contest the 317 seats won by the Conservatives in 2017 had "stopped the Liberal Democrat surge".
When asked who he would prefer to be in 10 Downing Street after the election, Farage said, “Not Jeremy Corbyn, obviously; it is going to be Boris Johnson.
“I would prefer that to Jeremy Corbyn. He [Johnson] will have a majority, there is no question about that,” Farage claimed.
He spoke as a YouGov poll revealed that 76 percent of those who support leaving the EU without a deal intend to vote for the Conservative Party on 12 December, while 83 percent of those who support Boris Johnson’s withdrawal agreement will also vote for the Tories.
As far as the Brexit Party is concerned, it has become "increasingly irrelevant" since the European elections in May, the survey claimed, citing only 11 percent of no-deal supporters who are now predicted to vote for Farage’s party at the upcoming general election.