10 reactions as Reform UK leader Nigel Farage attempts to become MP for eighth time

10 reactions as Reform UK leader Nigel Farage attempts to become MP for eighth time

Nigel Farage confirms he will stand as Reform UK candidate in general election


In news which was anticipated since an announcement was teased on Monday morning, former Ukip leader and Reform UK honorary president Nigel Farage will indeed stand as a candidate in July’s general election in the seaside constituency of Clacton – while also taking on the new role of leader of the party he helped set up.

Speaking at an afternoon press conference, former leader Richard Tice discussed getting some “real excitement” into the general election period and said he would “really like” Farage to become leader of Reform UK – an invitation which the ex-MEP has accepted.

After taking to the stage, Farage said: “I’m coming back as leader of Reform UK, but not just for this election campaign – I’m coming back for the next five years.

“And there’s one very simple reason for that: we all know already that the Conservative Party will be in opposition, but it won’t be the opposition – they are incapable of it.

“When [voters] start to realise that actually in those [Red Wall] seats, it’s a Conservative vote that’s a vote for Labour, it’s a Conservative vote that’s a wasted vote, then I think we might just surprise everybody.”

He also confirmed he would be standing after all, launching his election campaign in the Essex town at midday on Tuesday, because he can’t let down “millions of people”.

“So I have decided I’ve changed my mind. It’s allowed, you know? It’s not always a sign of weakness; it could potentially be a sign of strength,” he said.

Farage added that he also intended to bring about a “political revolt” with his leadership.

And unsurprisingly, Twitter has a lot to say about the news:

The surprise announcement comes after Farage had previously ruled himself out of standing in July’s general election, instead writing in a statement that he would “do my bit to help” with Reform UK’s election campaign, but “now is not the right time for me to go any further than that” as he intended to support Trump's grassroots campaign in America.

Since then, however, the ex-Member of European Parliament admitted to GB News on Friday that he has “absolutely huge regrets” about not standing in next month’s big vote - and now he's changed his mind.

While he’s no longer leader, Tice will continue to be involved in Reform UK as chairman, Farage confirmed.

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