Nigel Farage has laid out his proposal for a Brexit Party coalition with the Conservatives that could see him in government by the autumn and crash the UK out of the EU with no deal.
The Brexit Party leader, who has never won a parliamentary seat, said that a so-called ‘clean’ exit from the EU could be achieved by Boris Johnson becoming prime minister, calling a snap election and forming an election agreement with the Brexit Party.
Farage walked through his logic at a Telegraph-hosted event, saying that if Johnson were to make sufficient preparations for a no-deal Brexit, he might spur the EU to offer “some sort of tariff-free deal”.
“And if Boris did that, and he was prepared to go to House of Commons to be voted down, to lose a motion of confidence, to go the country on a general election on that ticket and with the support of people of like me – he would win a massive, thumping majority,” argued Farage.
This would allow Johnson to break the parliamentary deadlock that agreed in a non-binding vote that the UK should not leave the EU without a deal.
Farage had said that there is “little chance” of the Conservatives delivering on the promise to leave the EU by October 31, even if Johnson becomes prime minister.
If Johnson tries to force the issue through parliament he will face “open civil war”, he wrote in the Sunday Express.
Concerns that his party could split the vote among Tory Brexiteers is one of the considerations Tory MPs will be taking into account as they decide who they are backing for leadership of their party and the premiership.
The Brexit Party has already demonstrated its ability to take vast chunks of voters out of the hands of the Conservatives during the EU elections, and ran a close second to Labour in the Peterborough by-election.
“To win the next general election we don’t have to become the Brexit Party, make an electoral pact with them in certain seats, or offer a coalition in parliament,” said Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson in a column for the Telegraph.
“We have to respect the referendum result and leave the EU, as we said we would,” she added.
“Doing a deal with the Brexit Party would be an admission of defeat. And we’re not dead yet.”