WATCH: Senior Tory MP calls for election pact with Nigel Farage to save Brexit
A senior Tory MP has said the Conservatives will need to form an alliance with Nigel Farage’s Brexit Party in order to take Britain out of the EU.
Brexiteer Crispin Blunt said his party was in “deep trouble” over its failure to quit the bloc by the 29 March deadline, as angry voters look set to punish them at next week’s EU elections.
A YouGov poll released ahead of the vote put Mr Farage’s outfit on 34%, with the Conservatives languishing in fifth place on just 10% of the vote, after Theresa May pushed Brexit back to 31 October.
Mr Blunt, who served as a minister under David Cameron, told BBC Newsnight that a new leader in the coming months would allow the Tories to “reinvent” themselves as a Brexit party ahead of an "inevitable" snap general election.
“I cannot imagine for one minute that Theresa May is going to want to go to the next Conservative party conference in October and address it as leader," he said.
“I accept of course we’re in deep trouble and deep difficulty. But if we, under a new leader, reinvent ourselves properly as a Brexit party, we will be faced with the inevitability at some point of a general election in order to deliver Brexit because this Parliament is stopping the delivery of Brexit.
“And this is where in my judgement we are going to have to come to an accommodation with the Brexit Party.
“The Conservatives as a Brexit party, being very clear about their objectives are almost certainly going to have to go into some kind of electoral arrangement with the Brexit Party, otherwise Brexit doesn’t happen.”
It comes after Mr Farage told LBC that he would “do a deal with the devil” if it meant delivering a hard Brexit, when asked if he could prop up a eurosceptic Tory PM in the event of a hung Parliament.
Mr Blunt later added: “Nigel Farage said he would do a deal with the devil to get Brexit over the line; the Conservative party is very far from being the devil in this.
“80% of the membership of the Conservative Party are very keen to make sure that Brexit happens, we’ll be in a position to enthusiastically support leaving the EU with no deal and if we are then able to agree a position to put to the country, I think we would hit the ball out of the park.”