Nigel Farage says new Brexit party 'ready for battle' as watchdogs grant official status
Former Ukip leader Nigel Farage has said he is “ready for battle” on Brexit after his new political party got the green light from electoral watchdogs.
The Brexit Party was officially recognised today by the Electoral Commission, meaning it could field candidates for EU parliament elections in May if Brexit is severely delayed.
Mr Farage quit Ukip in December after its current leader Gerard Batten appointed anti-Islam campaigner Tommy Robinson as a political adviser.
The formation of his new party comes amid turmoil at Westminster over Brexit, after the Commons voted down the deal Theresa May clinched with Brussels.
The Prime Minister made a desperate dash to the continent this week for further talks, but has so far failed to secure any meaningful concessions on the controversial insurance plan to protect the Irish border.
Writing in the Daily Telegraph, Mr Farage said of his new outfit: “The party was founded with my full support and with the intention of fighting the European election on 23 May if Brexit has not been delivered by then.
“I have made it clear many times that I will not stand by and do nothing, so should this election need to be contested, I will stand as a candidate for the Brexit Party and I will give it my all.
“I sincerely hope that this prospect is recognised by both the Conservative party and the Labour party as a threat.
“If Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn do not welcome the prospect of this electoral threat, and would like me to retire from frontline politics, they have a very straightforward opportunity to keep themselves happy.
“All they have to do is deliver a proper Brexit – the one which 17.4 million people voted for in June 2016. Otherwise, this threat will turn into a promise.”
He added: “In defence of democracy, we stand ready for battle.”