Nigel Farage will lead new Brexit party as founding boss quits over anti-Islam tweets
Nigel Farage has revealed he will take over as the leader of the new Brexit Party after its founding boss had to resign over anti-Islamic tweets.
The ex-Ukip leader said he would take the movement into battle at the European Parliament elections if a long delay to Brexit leaves Britain forced to fight them.
Catherine Blaiklock quit as leader of the Brexit Party yesterday after it emerged she shared a number of online posts from far-right figures using a now-deleted Twitter account.
She retweed messages from anti-Islam campaigner Tommy Robinson and one from former BNP activist Mark Collett in which he referred to “white genocide”.
In one of her own tweets, which were unearthed by campaign group Hope Not Hate, she argued: “Islam = submission – mostly to raping men it seems.”
Mr Farage told the Radio 4 Today programme this morning that Ms Blaiklock was “never intended to be the long-term leader” of the party.
The MEP added: “I will take over as the leader of the Brexit party and I will lead this party into the European [Parliament] elections.
“We will put out a candidate list of people from right across the political spectrum - left, centre and right - and we will do it on trust.”
The EU has told Theresa May the UK will have to take part in the European Parliament elections in May if MPs refuse to back her Brexit deal and Britain wants to delay the Article 50 process beyond 12 May.
In a statement yesterday, Ms Blaiklock said: “The out-of-character comments that I made on social media some time ago were unacceptable in tone and content.
“After speaking to Nigel Farage, I realise that my comments fall well short of what is expected in any walk of life.
“I have accordingly tendered my resignation as party leader.”
Mr Farage served a number of stints as Ukip leader and is widely credited with helping to secure the vote for Brexit in 2016.
Last year he quit Ukip in protest at its direction under now-leader Gerard Batten, after the MEP appointed Mr Robinson as a political advisor.