UKIP has hit back after claims Nigel Farage would consider entering a coalition with the left-wing social democratic Labour party after the general election next year, insisting there would be no horse-trading to get UKIP into government and no coalitions – and, in any case, Labour won’t even debate with the Eurosceptic party, never mind negotiate with them.
The claims arose around an interview to be published in this week’s New Statesman which quoted Mr. Farage as saying he would support “anybody that gave me an opportunity to get my country back” while being questioned about the possibility of a UKIP-Labour coalition. Although interpreted as support for a coalition, Farage clarified his position, saying “I can’t see Ukip wilfully going into formal coalition with anybody” and that party support would fall well short of full-blown coalition.
In any case, the prospect of an alliance of any sort between UKIP and the Labour party seems distinctly more theoretical than practical, even if, as it now seems, UKIP could win enough MPs next year to make an alliance worthwhile. Indeed, the gulf between Labour and UKIP seemed as wide as ever today after Miliband’s Senate House speech.
A spokesman for Mr. Farage told Breitbart London this afternoon: “It’s quite obvious that Mr Miliband wouldn’t do a deal with us – he won’t even debate us.
“But the point we’re making is that we are keen to get the oft-promised referendum on EU membership for the British people. If we can get that by supporting another party at the next election, in exchange for a commitment, then we will. Not in coalition, not in exchange for power. Just in a straight-up commitment that the British people will finally get a say on European Union membership”.
Labour leader Miliband spoke at his third party relaunch of the year today, trying to regain ground lost after a disastrous conference in September. He vowed they would not try to “out-UKIP UKIP”, yet Labour would be “talking more about immigration as a party… but always on the basis of Labour values, not UKIP values”, claimed Miliband.
Despite having refused to debate with the party in the past, he invited a public debate on UKIP which he hoped would come to discredit Euroscepticism, accusing Farage and his followers of living in the past.
UKIP made a quick response to the suggestion of a public debate today, with Nigel Farage issuing a direct invitation to Ed Miliband to debate these issues, going head-to-head on live television. In a letter addressed to the Labour leader, Farage said: “A few months ago we sat on a couch together in front of television cameras and I suggested we debate, head to head.You more or less declined.
“Now I hear that you want to take me, UKIP, and all that we stand for “apart”. Well let me give you the opportunity.
“Let’s have a live, televised, head-to-head debate before the start of the general election campaign. I’m free any time after November 24th.”