Nigel Farage has ruled out standing as a candidate in the upcoming general election, deciding to “fight for Brexit” in Strasbourg, where the MEP says he can better influence the process.
In an article for the Telegraph, Farage said that with liberal former UKIP MP Douglas Carswell having stood down it would be “tempting” to stand in Clacton, the seat he noted is “perhaps the number one Eurosceptic constituency in the country by demographics.
“It would be a very easy win and for me, a personal vindication to get into the House of Commons after all these years of standing in election.”
But the former UKIP leader wrote that he had realised he could better fight for Britain’s interests in Strasbourg, as an MEP, pointing out in the piece: “If I compare the platform I have in Strasbourg to being a backbench MP, there is frankly no comparison.
“The Brexit negotiations will take place in Brussels and the European Parliament will not only have a large impact on them, but ultimately will have the right of veto any deal at the end of the two-year process.
“I believe I can use my profile in European politics to put real pressure on MEPs to vote for a sensible deal with the UK,” he added.
The former UKIP leader also said he expects that Prime Minister Theresa May will secure a large majority for the Conservatives on 8 June, and asserted that “Remainers have been trounced” in the Brexit argument.
“Ukip have had a huge transformative effect on British politics, but the job is far from done. We may have helped to win the war with the referendum, but winning the peace is of equal importance.”
Earlier on Thursday, Farage told Breitbart News Daily that fighting for Brexit in European Parliament, where he leads the Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy group, enables the MEP to “do battle up close with the European Union (EU)”.