UKIP leader Nigel Farage has been forced to delay his final decision to run for Thanet South in the 2015 general election because the Conservatives have not yet selected their candidate. Local Tories are desperate to select local councillor Julie Marson, but deliberately delayed the process because they feared her supporters would not be available on the allotted selection day.
UKIP also want to see Julie Marson selected to fight the seat as she is seen as a weak candidate, and easily beatable by Farage. The problem faced by UKIP is that they want to give their leader an easy win so they can concentrate resources in other seats. But a number of euro-sceptic candidates have applied for the Conservative nomination in Thanet South, and if they were to beat Marson they might make life hard for Farage.
Last month Breitbart London reported that local conservatives had put the brakes on their selection process as a result of worries that Marson supporters would not be available to attend the selection meeting. This has also raised concerns within UKIP that she might be beaten by a more credible candidate.
A senior UKIP official told Breitbart London: “We need to know what the Conservatives are doing. They are wasting time, and we want to make our announcement soon. We can’t move until we know what they are doing, and they seem to have delayed their selection indefinitely.”
Farage has spent months convincing the UKIP hierarchy that Thanet South is the right seat for him. The seat is in his home county of Kent and he has previously stated that he did not want to run in an unfamiliar area. His second choice for 2015 is Castle Point in Essex but the sitting MP Rebecca Harris is the Vice-Chairman of the Conservative Party and is likely to be able to galvanise significant campaign support.