Businessman and Leave.EU founder Arron Banks has testified in front of the UK Parliament’s Treasury Select Committee today, asserting that the establishment ‘Vote Leave’ campaign conspired to keep UK Independence Party (UKIP) leader Nigel Farage out of a major movie about the European Union referendum.
The film, entitled ‘Brexit: The Movie’, was crowdsourced in terms of funding, though it received half of its overall budget from Mr. Banks. Regardless of this fact, Mr. Banks asserted that Vote Leave founder Matthew Elliott – who he calls ‘Lord Elliott of Loserville’ – claimed he had the support of the movie’s directors in the EU referendum Leave campaign “designation” document.
In addition to this, Mr. Banks claims that Mr. Elliott and his group urged the movie makers to try and keep Mr. Farage – perhaps the most well known figure in the Brexit debate – out of the film. Speaking to the committee, Mr. Banks said:
“Our view of life was always that a Vote Leave bid was always an establishment bid if you like.
“When you looked at the bid we put forward which was the full backing of UKIP, Leave.EU had something like a million public supporters signed up to it. All sorts of different groups signed up to it representing a very large range of opinion in the Eurosceptic world. Really Vote Leave was a Tory campaign with a few little additions to it. So it didn’t really represent the wider Eurosceptic view. That’s how we saw it.
“We funded Brexit: The Movie, which we spent nearly £45,000 putting money into the movie. They [Vote Leave] quoted in their submission they had one conversation where they basically said if Mr. Farage and UKIP were even involved in the project, ‘We won’t be involved in it’. So that was put in their submission as a fact that they had helped Brexit: The Movie… whereas we had pretty well funded 50 per cent of it”.
You can watch the full video above.