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Mr. Montgomerie,

It is very easy to have a one-sided smear campaign, but much more difficult to have a campaign which allows for free debate.

On three occasions UKIP Witney has asked David Cameron to publicly debate with them the subject of Britain's membership of the European Union and he has either ignored or refused those requests. David Cameron is presenting himself as the next Prime Minister and therefore owes the country the opportunity of hearing his unequivocal views on this subject, let alone his own constituents - 19 percent of whom voted UKIP in 2004 - otherwise it shows a contempt, which is beginning to become a two way emotion.

So I will ask you, what is David Cameron afraid of? Why is it that on Rupert Matthews article, the content of which brought its author nor his Party any credit, having asked this same question twice it still remains unanswered.

It is very easy to have a one-sided smear campaign

What smears are in this leaflet? Did UKIP, for example, actually vote against the regulations raised at point 5 of the leaflet? Did they oppose the closure of the Shetland Box?

much more difficult to have a campaign which allows for free debate.

Really, so UKIP will be having free debate as part of their election campaign, will they? Their leaflets and videos will pay full respect to their opponents?

These leaflets are for the upcoming Euro elections. The focus is on winning.

19 percent of whom voted UKIP in 2004

Barely more than 2% voted UKIP in 2005! Cameron has his eyes on the big prize next year. The euros make a difference for morale. The last thing Cameron wants is to do a Hague, have the focus drawn on to Europe which most people aren't that concerned with, win the euros and then lose the general election.

As it is Cameron will still come out on top next month and probably win next year too.

UKIP MEPs should be glad the EU exists. Without it those piggies would be without a trough and would need an honest job!

Good to see we're focussing on UKIP's bizarre voting record. Would any Ukippers like to explain what on Earth their party was playing at?

I look forward to the next leaflet in the series: Failing to defend British interests: Conservative MPs...

Raj & Richard J,

UKIP will have a free debate with anyone, even your Party; the trouble is no-one wants to have that debate, least of all you or your party.

I repeat the question - What is David Cameron afraid of? If he was not afraid he would accept the challenge - No?

Politics is a dirty business and I am not surprised the Tories have adopted smear campaign tactic

What about Den Dover, and the £500,000 he pocketed? To name only one of their shady lot. People who live in glass houses......

This follows the disgraceful false information put out by Rupert Mathews recently. No doubt we can expect more of the same as election day approaches.

Pigs in troughs? UKIP wants us to leave the wretched EU, the Tories believe "In Europe but not ruled by Europe". I exclude Messrs.Hannan and Helmer.

UKIP have been a bit of a waste of time in Europe (not as useless as LibLabCon though). I read a quote by a BNP spokesman that said "We'll cause more trouble in the EU Parliament in 6 months than UKIP has caused in 5 years". Now that sounds appealing. Even more so after just having heard Ken Clarke's outpourings on the Andrew Marr show.

Clarke is an affront to democracy with his idea of letting the second Irish "vote" determine the future soverignty of this country. Given that he's speaking for the Conservative Party the only remaining alternatives for voters who do not want to be undemocratically railroaded into total surrender to the EU are UKIP and the BNP. Good luck to both of them and a plague on all the main three parties.

I'd be horrified if DC debated with UKIP. He should deny UKIP publicity. UKIP will get thrashed in June and they are desperate for any debate or publicity that might just save one or two of their failed MEPs.

Why are these leaflets funded by the EEP ? showing your true colours I see ! Are you allowed to even hand these out in election time I think not. I shall vote UKIP for the very reason you have produced these leaflets. Obviously your running scared !

Do we really need another thread about UKIP? Last year they scraped merely half the number of votes of the Christian People's Party (Who they?) in the London election. Let's not give these dead-in-the-water irrelevances the oxygen of publicity.


I'm sympathetic to what you say but on this occasion I should point out that I'm only promoting literature produced by Tory MEPs and sent to me for the very purpose of promoting them on this site.

In terms of defeating the UKIP threat in June's European Elections a leaflet from Tory MEPs chooses to emphasise their MEPs' record of failure rather than addressing the independence argument head on.

Sensible given that many Tories would side with the Better Off Out message if Tories tried to counter it.

Lol! I bet grassroots Tory members will be so proud to see the party distributing EPP attack material like this.

How lovely to see that sweet pro-USE EPP heart logo on the Tory leaflets.

Whatever happens to the UKIP vote, I can't wait for the 'not quite as you expected' 'EPP withdrawal' after the elections.

That's when the real fight will begin.

Labour has maintained our opt out of the Working Time Directive, and the Tories know this. Including "support for the working time directive" is a lie.


"I can't wait for the 'not quite as you expected' 'EPP withdrawal' after the elections.

That's when the real fight will begin."

I think you might be disappointed when all goes according to plan!

Why have you changed your name to "RON" by the way - I am slightly bemused! ;-)

Seems fair enough to me, provided all the facts are true. It is a risk, however, as it may be used to show the tories as a nasty party.

This release is a joke. It does not even give the details of specific votes. Let's deal with the allegations.

The so-called in-fighting has been led by two ex-Tories, Roger Knapman MEP and his disgraced aide Piers Merchant. They and their allies, using stolen membership databases, have been behind the concerted smear campaign against Nigel Farage and the NEC.

Several senior UKIP colleagues expect Knapman, who is desperate for a Peerage, to defect back in the coming weeks. The fact that Knapman used Polish builders is a non-story. UKIP cannot tell a MEP who to employ

The accusations on expenses are nothing compared to Den Dover, Derek Conway and other Tory scandals such as Nannygate. Unlike Den Dover, Wise paid the money back. We will see how clean the Tories are when MP's expenses are published.

UKIP, however, has Marta Andreasen standing for the party. Andreasen was the Chief Accountant of the EU who was sacked for exposing fraud. She initially went to the Tories for help but they let her down. Marta then joined UKIP and is the party's Treasurer and number 2 candidate in the South East.

UKIP will be revealing shortly how Tories have consistently with the federalist chums in the EPP to add to EU red tape and regulations. They recently voted in favour of EU regulation of The City and the financial sector. Unlike here, we will give details of the legislation and who voted for it.

The Wales Chairman mentioned was a new member who rose quickly, ran for the leadership, lost and left the party. UKIP has plenty of anti-Cameron quotes made by supporters of David Davis and MEPs who support the Tories staying in the EPP.

If that quote made by Nigel Farage, in jest, is the best you can do, then UKIP is in fine shape. UKIP will be releasing a series of quotes by Conservative MEPs and MPs supporting the Lisbon Treaty and Britain joining the Euro.

I have jusy spoken to Nigel Farage about this pathetic stunt. He just laughed at it. The Conservatives have become a joke on their failure to oppose the EU super-state effectively.

Excellent. So the Tory Party is now smearing their traditional supporters who choose to vote UKIP instead of the trendy wet pro-EU Cameroonian Tory Party.

Still no Ukippers explaining their voting record I see.


"Still no Ukippers explaining their voting record I see.

Come on RichardJ, don't be so pathetic.

UKIP are not in Brussels to play along with the charade of the EU votes, they are there to withdraw.

No-one votes for UKIP to vote for Brussels bills, it is simply a protest vote to register support for EU withdrawal.

UKIP are rubbish as a party. All the criticisms of their infighting, poor organisation etc etc are 100% valid, but 100% meaningless.

It is the potency of their message that keeps them alive, and always will whilst Cameron plays the antidemocratic authoritarian and denys MPs who endorse a policy supported by 55% of the British public a place on his front bench team.

Pinktory may well be horrified if DC debated publicly with UKIP - probably as he would be 'trounced'!

Richard J - UKIP's voting record is not the subject of discussion really, but if you wish to discuss this please explain one of your MEPs publicly saying in the EU Parliament he would vote for everything!

Answer the damn question please - What is David Cameron afraid of? If he was not afraid he would accept the invitation - No?

My last comment was not malicious. It pointed out that UKIP will publish a document that spells out the Tories' records in Strasbourg and their plotting against Marta Andreasen of which we have proof.

witterings: I have answered your question. You just don't like the answer.

I think the notion that you can use your vote in the European elections in order that British interests can be promoted within a Parliament, whose members are drawn from 27 states covering 500 million people, is rather meaningless.

I think the best you can hope for is that your vote helps to keep certain ideas in circulation.

UKIP contribute to this on the issue of withdrawal, however ineptly they advance it.

@UKIP Member,

You know full well that your comment contained a smear that I cannot tolerate. If you abuse your freedom once more to post on this website I will take steps to ban you.

"It is very easy to have a one-sided smear campaign, but much more difficult to have a campaign which allows for free debate."

Take it as a compliment, clearly the Conservative hight command has some concerns about the UKIP vote and whilst unwilling to have much in the way of policies on the EU, it seeks to shore up its vote with a smear campaign.

"I think you might be disappointed when all goes according to plan!

Why have you changed your name to "RON" by the way - I am slightly bemused! ;-)

Lol Sally. I'll be pleased if it delivered, but know it won't be, but we'll just have to wait on that one, but with a total absence of effort and success on forming a new coalition over the past 2 years, you would have to remove logic and evidence from your opinion making to believe the Tories will suddenly be completely detached from the EPP-ED group straight after the elections.

On the name, I forgot to sign in, so the name simply reverted to the cookied Replace Osborne Now login.

I guess it is always worth highlighting that aim anyway! ;-)

Anyway, the sun is shining, and I have to spend the rest of the day sitting on my mower cutting the grass rather than cutting through sixth-form substandard attack leaflets...


It is notable how similar the Labour and Lib Dem parties appear to be when it comes to Europe! Both are unwilling for the British People to be given a say in a Referendum. The Conservatives are the only serious party calling them to account for this.

Yet again, it is apparent that this website is run by closet UKIP supporters for the benefit of other UKIP - and now BNP - fans. Isn't it about time someone set up a CONSERVATIVE website so that real Tories who want success at all levels of elective representation can exchange productive thoughts on the issues of the day!

@ Man on the Clapham Omnibus,

This website has published allegations against UKIP and its members are entitled to rebut them.

It is typical of the Cameroon control freaks here that they seek to deny free speech on a debate that they started.

If you are a Cameroon, you can debate with yourself on Platform 10. It is as boring as the official blog on conservatives.com.

Where is the anti-BNP leaflet?

And you guys here are better than the Sun et al. in what way exactly?

I thought this low level smear bollocks was beyond ConHome, clearly I was wrong.

UKIP Member when was Tom Wise kicked out of UKIP? I had read that he never was.

@ Tim Montgomerie

Yesterday you published this smear in Rupert Matthews article - "In 2008 Robin Page – a farmer and TV presenter – was prevented from standing as a UKIP MEP candidate. He fumed: “There is so much sleaze in UKIP at the moment. I think the hierarchy wanted to prevent me from standing in case I won a place at Brussels and saw how some of them behave. It is a disgrace; the whole thing has been run like a Zimbabwean election.”

You may wish to apologise, as a Freedom Association member, to TFA President Christopher Gill. Christopher was in charge of the nomination process and is, as you know, a man of integrity.

You ought to read this article - http://iaindale.blogspot.com/2008/09/ukips-zimbabwean-election-sees-robin.html - and apologise for the libel. Christopher Gill has grounds for actions against you, Jonathan, Rupert and Stefan.

Can we have a cast-iron promise from David Cameron that a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty/Constitution will be held with 12 months of being elected?

Oh come on! Is that the best the Tories can do? Rodger Knapman employed, quite legally, some Polish builders. So what? Mrs Farage is German and Mr Batten’s wife comes from the Philippines. Are you going to attack UKIP for this?

UKIP is not against allowing all foreigners to enter or work in the UK but rather for the imposition of sensible restrictions and limits. Neither is UKIP against a European trade agreement (a genuine “Common Market”) but IS opposed to political rule from Brussels.

With every attack from the Tory Leadership, UKIP gains more publicity and will gain yet more votes on June 4th so keep it coming.

We are like dragons’ teeth scattered inside the fields the Tories use to think they harvested.

Tom Wise lost the UKIP whip and did not renew his membership. Mr Wise has been charged but is innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. I was not aware that the Conservatives had abandoned the British legal system.

"Yet again, it is apparent that this website is run by closet UKIP supporters for the benefit of other UKIP - and now BNP - fans. "

Man on a Clapham Omnibus - that is, with respect, a little unfair. Neither Tim Montgomerie nor Jonathan Isaby are "closet ukip supporters" - indeed Tim served as IDS's Chief of Staff! Both simply want to cover current political topics and get as much debate as they can going.
The trouble is that the "UKIP Homeless" (who in fact DO have a perfectly good "home" now but seem to prefer here) are simply engaging in some good old "knockabout" politics - the inevitable rough and tumble one gets in the run-up to any Election. It is always the same - the smaller parties accuse the larger of being "frit" if they do not respond to the constant pulling and tugging at their coat-tails; accusations of "smears" fly about whilst at the same time the accusers offer up their own "kite-flying" stories and so it continues until Polling Day. All good fun in a way but many people get turned off by it and that is why, by and large, one tends to read the same comments from the same people.

Who should I vote for?

Being a Conservative party member I shouldn't have to ask myself that question. There should be no doubt in my mind that voting Tory is the right thing to do. But there is doubt.

There's a big problem facing the Tory party in the run up to the Euro Elections, and that problem's name is....... Referendum (dun dun dunnnnnn...). It's a problem that David Cameron can do little about without making life very difficult for himself if he is to lead the next government.

It's like this: If Gordon Brown was to do the entire country a favour and call an early election, then Cameron's first year in office becomes a whole lot easier. He can give the go ahead to his promised referendum before the Lisbon Treaty is ratified, the country will vote NO, and the Treaty dies on it's arse. Everybody is happy. But if Gordon decides to desperately cling on to power like we all expect him to, then Cameron has some very difficult times ahead.

If the Lisbon Treaty is already ratified when Dave strides through the big black door then he is left with two options. The first is to say "I'm sorry, but Gordon has put the country into a position that would be too difficult to remove ourselves from". The second option would be to put the UK at odds with the rest of Europe by backing out of a Treaty that we are already signed up to. Unfortunately for David Cameron, neither of the two options are great (understatement). The first will alienate a vast chunk of the party, and the second will be very damaging to European relations.

Of course if Gordon Brown had not broken yet another manifesto promise then this would be all academic.

So where does that leave me?

UKIP? The problem I have with UKIP is a simple one. Though I hate the EU, I cannot see how we can extricate ourselves from it without causing damage. But not only that, I do believe that there are some benefits to being in the EU (though I can't think of any off hand).

Labour and the LibDems? I've lumped these together because they both want further integration into the EU, and hell will freeze over before I vote for that (or them).

Libertas? Now I do like what Libertas have to say but I just can't see how they are going to achieve it, so they are a no no for now.

So that brings me back to the Conservatives. I can't blame Dave for not promising a referendum after ratification. It would be a bloody political nightmare to pull us out of the EU - because that is what it will mean. Once in place, the rest of Europe will not scrap the Treaty because the Brits don't like it.

So I've made my decision. I'm going to vote Tory. I'm voting Tory in the hope that Gordon steps down (or is pushed) before the Treaty is ratified. If that fails then I'm putting my trust in David Cameron's Tories to fight for UK interests from within the Treaty. Their the only party that are likely to do that (apart from Libertas but I can't see them getting the numbers).

So here's a message for Dave: Tell us the truth i.e. If we have a Tory government before ratification then we will have a referendum. If not, then you will do your utmost to get the best deal for the UK post treaty.

Cameron could end Europe as an issue once in office by just having a referendum on EU membership. Tory members could have a free vote & democracy could be used to resolve the UK's relationship with Brussels.

The EU could fund its PR for the yes camp & the UK government could provide the same level of funding for the no camp-just to make things fair.

Once the true damage of EU membership was revealed the UK electorate could vote to get our country out of the clutches of Brussels.

@ Sally Roberts, UKIP members are entitled to defend their party against allegations made by the Conservatives. As I said earlier, many of the alleged problems in UKIP have been caused by ex-Tories.

It is telling that these publications carry the logo of the EPP-ED Group. It is possible, even likely, that they were funded by the European Parliament, i.e. with taxpayers money.

@ Steve Green.

You wrote "The problem I have with UKIP is a simple one. Though I hate the EU, I cannot see how we can extricate ourselves from it without causing damage."

Please define the damage that EU withdrawal would cause. Is the EU damaged by Switzerland and Norway not being members? Are these countries, richer per capita than the UK, damaged by being members of EFTA rather than the EU. I think not!

UKIP Member,

I was talking about the damage done to foreign relations as we break away from the union. No one can say how bad that will be, but I think you are kidding yourself if you think it will be done amicably.

@ Steve Green. There are agreed procedures for leaving the EU. Even the Lisbon Treaty sets out a formal process for withdrawal.

Do Norway and Switzerland have bad relations with the EU because they have chosen not to join? No, because, through EFTA, they have free trade agreements.

Sally Roberts at 11.45

"All good fun in a way but many people get turned off by it and that is why, by and large, one tends to read the same comments from the same people."

Including those by Sally Roberts?

Sally, on June 18th last year David Cameron wrote to me stating "I believe it would be wrong for Britain to leave the EU". Has this changed? Does he therefore continue to believe in the political integration of Britain into the EU?

Conservative Home is an 'open' website and therefore you cannot complain if statements made by your party are challenged by those who dispute such statements.

If the Conservative Party is so dismissive of UKIP then publicly debate with them - would that course of action not be to your party's benefit instead of just refusing and leaving the accusation of 'frit' on the table?

Just asking is all.

UKIP are not in Brussels to play along with the charade of the EU votes, they are there to withdraw.

In that case, "Tory"blog, why do they accept and claim all the allowances that come with the job?


UKIP Member,

Not joining, and leaving the EU are two totally different subjects (and you know it).

If we leave then all the past treaties will no longer apply. We will be breaking those treaties. Agreements that have stopped disputes with our neighbours will no longer apply (think fishing for a start).

It may be easy for you to say "sod em if they don't like it" but you will not be the Prime Minister having to sort the whole mess out.

Even if we leave the EU, the UK will have to write a whole new bunch of treaties to replace the ones we would be scrapping.

Do I wish that we had never got so involved in the EU - yes. But I think our best option now is to fight further integration and then start to reverse the policies which are bad for the UK. I think Cameron will do that.

@ Raj

UKIP MEPs turn up to protest against the EU's imposition of 75% of our laws, over 3000 laws a year.

""All good fun in a way but many people get turned off by it and that is why, by and large, one tends to read the same comments from the same people."

Including those by Sally Roberts?

Yes, Witterings - I freely admit I'm one of those people! I merely observe that new posters who might like to join us are perhaps deterred.

Sally, on June 18th last year David Cameron wrote to me stating "I believe it would be wrong for Britain to leave the EU". Has this changed? Does he therefore continue to believe in the political integration of Britain into the EU?"

Belonging to the EU and further integration into it are different things as you know as well as I do. I hope that we WILL say in the EU - I in common with other Conservatives simply believe that we do not wish to integrate further.

@ Steve Green

If we leave the EU, Britain needs just one bilateral agreement like Norway and Switzerland. The previous treaties provide for withdrawal - the Vienna process I believe. They will still exist without Britain but would be superceded by the Lisbon Treaty.

European integration was facilitated by the Maastricht, Amsterdam and Nice treaties. The Lisbon Treaty merely finishes the job. If you oppose integration you must oppose the previous, not just Lisbon, and that means advocating withdrawal.

Resident Leftie @ 10:36 you say "Including "support for the working time directive" is a lie."

The BBC article you refer to says: "However, a majority of Labour MEPs voted to scrap the opt-out, putting them at odds with the UK government just weeks before the European elections" ?

UKIP MEPs turn up to protest against the EU's imposition of 75% of our laws

They don't have to make claims for allowances to do that. They're hypocrites if they take a penny from the EU.

Raj, are you claiming that Dan Hannan MEP and Roger Helmer MEP, Tory Better Off Out signatories, are hypocrites too?

UKIP's MEPs are perfectly entitled to claim expenses in relation to fighting for UK Independence. You just want to silence them like the authoritarian federalists in the Parliament.

I am still waiting for Tim, Jonathan and Rupert to apologise publicly to Christopher Gill for the Robin Page smear.

UKIP squandered their breakthrough in 2004, in a similar way the Green party squandered theirs in 1989. Let us all hope the BNP squander any gains they may make in June.

@ Gary at 12.47

UKIP did not squander the breakthrough in 2004. We have managed the majority of the British public that we should leave the EU - 55% in the recent BBC Daily Politics Show. That is a fantastic achievement.

Some of the comments bear out what I said earlier- politics is a dirty business.

The Conservatives complained, rightly, about the recent smears on their MPs from Downing St. Pity they have stooped to this themselves.

I don`t mind the vindictive and often idiotic comments you get here. It just shows how pathetic they are. Their leader, with his cheap "fruitcakes and closet racists" jibe set them a good example and they are following it.

I have money on UKIP winning NO SEATS in the Euro elections.


We have money on UKIP achieving a very sizeable vote. UKIP's big opportunity can't have been lost it hasn't come yet! It comes on June 4th when a strong performance puts a solid UKIP in good stead to pummel the incoming europhile Tory government.

Many Conservatives vote for UKIP at European elections because it's a good way of putting pressure on their own party to become more eurosceptical.

This leaflet doesn't really address that.

UKIP are a pressure group, not a party, which brings together a coalition of the ignorant, the selfish and the misty-eyed who actually think the 1920s were a good idea. In short, people we'd all be better off without.

The sheer amount of factual erroneousness that Europhobes come out with (e.g. that the regional constituencies were a Bruxellois decision - actually London - that 'laws are imposed on us by Brussels' - when British ministers propose them, British comissioners introduce them, and British MEPs vote for them - that it costs too much, when the cost is only 7p per person per day) is enough to dismiss them instantly as too dumb to be allowed to vote.

Francis @ 13:28 - if any Conservatives are doing that then they should be very well aware that they are betraying their Party and their own local colleagues who are working hard, knocking on doors, leafleting and generally doing all they can to maximise the Conservative Vote on 4th June - including in County Council Elections. They should also be aware that if the Conservatives do not do as well as they otherwise might on 4th June then it sends a message of aid and succour to the Labour Party that all is perhaps not lost for them next year!

I set out the difficulties for UKIP on returning MEP to Strasbourg on my 'UKIPUNCOVERED' blog on 30th April 2003.

I then proposed that sitting UKIP MEPs be placed no higher than third on the party list at the following election, reasons were given at length and the post is available on the blog's archives..

It all came back to haunt one UKIP SW MEP on the BBC today with the closing remark that he was asking the voters to put him on the plane (intimation "gravy train") back to Brussels.

I hope that UKIP get no seats this time round, nor indeed neither should any party with sitting MEPs. Abstention or one of the many untried parties fielding candidates is the only sane choice for this institution we should all be striving to disband, particularly in this present depression.

Quite simply neither the election nor the Parliament can be afforded anywhere within the EU. Any elected will harvest the general wrath is my latest prediction!

The Tories are very very scared...

The Conservatives trumpet about their "love bombing" of Lib Dem voters. UKIP came third in 2004 but the Conservatives attack UKIPpers. Why the different approach?


The Conservatives have leaflets against the LibDems, Labour and UKIP. I don't think they are scared but aren't taking any voters for granted.

My main fear as stated before on other such threads is not that UKIP will win many seats, (It will of course lose some of its existing seats but still have about 4 or 5 I feel)but that it will act as a spoiler for the Tory Party and indirectly help Labour as Sally Roberts has said.

Unlike Sally I am NOT a Europhile, I wish we had NOT entered the then Common Market in 1973, I will never forgive the late Ted Heath for taking us in, and I campaigned for a "No" Vote in the 1975 Referendum. However we are in it and have been for 36 years and our old "White Commonwealth" preferential markets have long since gone to other Trade Blocs and will not return. I would like to see Cameron when PM negotiate a better deal for the UK as Margaret Thatcher did and would like us to be able to take back our fishing grounds and end the obscenity of UK trawlers having to dump good fish back in the sea when people in other lands are starving, and whilst other nations fleets can fish our waters. There is also the "gold plating" of EU directives by our own Civil Service and Courts which must be stopped.

I can remember a couple of years ago in Surbiton when going to a meeting I encountered a group of local Conservatives asking me to sign a petition to Parliament, to call the promised Referendum on the Lisbon Treaty. I signed but the whole idea seems to have been parked in a siding since then. It would be a good idea for DC to give a categorical assurance before the next General Election that he will hold such a referendum if he wins.

Tim is right, Conservatives aren't taking anything for granted. If UKIP campaign is based on Conservatives being complacent, and them picking up protest votes. Then UKIP will be very disappointed. Conservatives should be, ever so quietly, confident of good results at European elections.

It is quite clear that despite months of senior Tory figures insisting that they are not in the least bit worried about UKIP in these European elections, the truth is very different.

I wonder if they've been listening to Tories like me saying that we are deeply unhappy with the Conservative position on Europe? I wonder if they've received internal evidence of mass defections to UKIP (votes I mean not members) in these elections from the Tory ranks?

I can't think of any other reason for such an outrageous attack on a party that is actually standing up for British interests-contrasting with the efforts of Kirkhope and his team!

"We have money on UKIP achieving a very sizeable vote.

However much that might be desirable, I really can't see it happening unfortunately.

The fair criticism of UKIP is that they integration is to vote UKIP in the euros.

hmm, that message has been severely truncated, but I can't be bothered to type it again!

Why was my 'posting' of about ten minutes ago rejected?

Comment at 16.07 addressed to Tim - why the non acceptance of previous posting?

It wasn't Sentinel. I haven't deleted anything from you.

ToryBlog - have you just had a very good lunch? ;-)

Matt Jones @ 13:37 - We are agreed that UKIP is a pressure group rather than a political party. But I think the agreement ends there.

It is ironic that you speak of ignorance then relay a series of claims that are worse than heavily qualified. What is it about Britain being politically sovereign over its own affairs that stirs such anger in you? Why should co-operation and being good neighbours with our European friends require us to hand control of our country to an unaccountable series of bodies in Brussels/Strasbourg?

More than 75% of the laws in this country originate in Europe. That is a fact. Perhaps you are confusing what British ministers propose as being the origin of legislation, when in fact it is the ratification process after the legislation had been drawn up in Brussels/Strasbourg.

Do you honestly believe that the EU costs us only £25.55 per person per year? That equates to £1.5bn. The Global Vision estimate of UK net contribution to the EU in 2007 was £4.7bn. So given your lack of accuracy, numeracy or both, just who should be considered too dumb to be allowed to vote now?

"I thought this low level smear bollocks was beyond ConHome, clearly I was wrong."

How is it a smear to highlight UKIP's strange voting record? These are facts.

Why do UKIP sit in the EP at all? I'd have thought that, if they want us out of the EU, they'd set an example and refuse their seats

But no, they're all quite happy to take their seats and pocket the cash

All aboard the gravy train!

Leaflets such as this will do nothing to help me make up my mind. I have no interest in what the other parties haven't done in the past and won't do in the future. What about what THIS party intends to do? And that's not an attack on the Tories, I am even more sick of Labours "do nothing party" mantra which says nothing about what Labour will do but only what the Conservatives won't do.
Basically not one of these leaflets tells me where the Conservatives stand on these issues listed on each of the 3 leaflets. Am I to imply that they think and plan to do the opposite of those parties on those points?

Hi Mel,
There'll be more to read as the campaign progresses but try this for starters:


Its beyond me why this site bothers so much about UKIP and the BNP. At the end of the day you win elections by gaining support from the moderate majority in this country not the far right.
You need to worry about people who may vote Lib/Dem not those who may vote for either of these two very minor parties.

Sally thanks bunches, off to read it

Why don't the intellectually-challenged supporters of UKIP/BNP - who seem to comprise most of this site - realize that they have to elect MPs not MEPs to change the law of the land and they stand as much chance of getting ONE MP as Hannan does of becoming Prime Minister - ie zilch!

Off the Topic but maybe addressing the Sentinel of Hartlepool issue:
I have noticed that since the site updated its technology, I have sometimes had difficulty submitting posts. Sometimes it looks as if a post has gone through and no code is prompted for - sometimes it goes through, sometimes it doesn't. I have gone back and recovered the page in the web-track and resubmitted. Also in the Reply feature, success is a bit more intermittent than I would like in landing on a reply thread. Sometimes just posted off the main thread.
Using Firefox browser.

Boring thread. I don't regard this attack on UKIP MEPs voting record as a smear at all.It seems a fact.
However there are a number of decent people in UKIP who we should be encouraging back into the Conservative Party so we should be very careful how we treat UKIP even though they spend an inordinate amount of time attacking us.
Personally I do not expect UKIP to do as well as they did last time round.Despite Farage's best efforts they have failed completely to achieve the breakthrough that should have happened when Labour and the Lib Dems betrayed the electorate by reneging on their promise of a referendum on Lisbon.

Tony Sharp: Firstly, you misunderstood me: "British ministers" actions was nothing to do with London - these ministers go to the Consilium, the upper chamber of the European Parliament, which sits in secret, make their proposals and deals about which we never hear the full story, then come home and whinge that those things for which they fought were forced upon them. This is a revolting lie from an unforgivable system - one that British ministers from all recent governments have delighted in, as it allows them to take decisions they want, but then escape much of their responsibility.

Secondly, your figure is wrong - the £4.7bn is the gross contribution, we then have £3.2bn spent within the UK, leading to a net contribution of £1.5bn. These numbers are all a matter of public record in the EU budgets.

Finally, "Britain being politically sovereign in its own affairs" does not stir anger in me, it stirs amusement, and laughter. North Somerset is not politically sovereign in her affairs, 100% of our laws are forced upon us by London. The westcountry as a whole is not politically sovereign, 100% of our laws are forced upon us, and just about the only external investment is thanks to EU funding, as London ignores anything west of Hampshire. I want to see the principle of subsidiarity properly applied, but all layers - so local decisions should be made by better empowered councils, and decisions that need continental weight behind them made by the EU. The thing is, if you do that, you quickly realise that just about the only layer of government that is completely meaningless, and should be abolished, is national - too far removed from localities to make informed decisions, not covering enough land, people or capital to make effective decisions. So I have no anger, only laughter. I am a Somersetter, a Brit, and a European - all of these are emotional identities, but politically I am only the first and the third, and only want to see power resting at those levels.

It is being suggested on another blog that retiring MEP Christopher Beazley ,full member of the EPP has now left the Conservative party.It was long ago reported here that he was on defection watch so is this true?

Posted by: a-tracy | May 03, 2009 at 12:37

Resident Leftie @ 10:36 you say "Including "support for the working time directive" is a lie."

The BBC article you refer to says: "However, a majority of Labour MEPs voted to scrap the opt-out, putting them at odds with the UK government just weeks before the European elections" ?

I stand corrected. It's not a lie, just misleading which is par for the course for a political leaflet.

When are the Tories going to bring out the Big Beast?
(Has Ken been kidnapped and gagged?)

It is a shame Matt that your argument is undermined by your inaccuracy. For your information the GROSS contribution to the EU between 1997-2006 was £10.4bn per annum. The average NET contribution during that time was £3.27bn. I suggest you do some research before making claims that are plain wrong.

Your argument is also undermined by your inability to comprehend what our contributions to the EU mean for spending in this country. The 'external investment' in the west country is money paid in taxes by the UK taxpayer. The EU allocates less money to UK spending than we contribute to the EU. You also have to factor in the cost of administering this flow of money back and forth. The rest of what we contribute is spent in other EU member states.

It is laughable that you think any decisions need continental weight behind them. If we had a properly sovereign UK Parliament in Westminster responsible for all legislation and regulations in this country, the west country would enjoy more democratic representation than it ever could in the EU Parliament.

The EU is not some benevolent and democratic colossus. It is an unnecessary and intrusive layer of bureaucracy that is not only costly but sees this country left unable to determine its own affairs. Love it if you will, but at least be honest about it.

"ToryBlog - have you just had a very good lunch? ;-)"

:-) LoL, I wish Sally! I sneaked inside from the mowing to take a quick break but didn't have the time to re-post before the missus rumbled me!

"I want to see the principle of subsidiarity properly applied, but all layers - so local decisions should be made by better empowered councils, and decisions that need continental weight behind them made by the EU."

What decisions do you think the EU should make and why?

How do we gain from the common external tariff, CAP, CFP, social chapter etc?

It is being suggested on another blog that retiring MEP Christopher Beazley ,full member of the EPP has now left the Conservative party.It was long ago reported here that he was on defection watch so is this true?

Posted by: michael mcgough | May 03, 2009 at 21:26

Hi Michael - are you the famous UKIP liar who misled members by claiming to be the PPC for Harlow when you applied to be on the MEP list?

Michael why did you lie and mislead members?

Observers may not know that MEPs can change their vote within a few days, in case they vote the wrong way. UKIP had to change their votes on the working time directive, after (on many of the clauses) voting to end the UK's opt-out. Such attention to detail is not good enough if you claim to defend British interests.

@resident leftie 21:33 - why misleading? One of the MEPs voting against your own government is the now-leader of the Labour MEPs in the European Parliament AND the MEP who led the negotiations for the EP against the Council was a Labour MEP.
Enough said?

I am not a statistician but have been involved in politics for the last 40 years. Speaking to people, reading the “runes” etc my own guess? ( I won’t call it a prediction) is as follows, (adjusted for the reduction of 6 seats)
Cons 27 no net change
Lab 14 net loss 5
Lib 10 net loss 2
UKIP 8 net loss 4
SNP 3 net gain 1
PC 1 no change
Green 3 net gain 1
BNP 3 net gain 3

I would dearly love to see the Greens totally eliminated in the UK but I am realistic enough to realise that with all the publicity they are receiving about the Man-Made Global Warming Myth they are likely to hold what they have and gain one more seat. UKIP will not be clobbered as much as some feel (or even hope) but will lose 4 seats, the SNP will gain a seat from Labour and the BNP will gain from both Labour and the Tories. PC will maintain its seat in Wales. The Conservatives will lose 1 seat to the BNP but gain 3 from UKIP, but will “lose” 2 from the reduction of seats so nil net change for them. Labour will lose 2 seats to BNP, 1 to the SNP and “lose” a further 2 from the reduction. The Libs will lose 1 seat to the Greens and "lose" 2 from the reduction.

It will be interesting to see how accurate this is in the event.

Poor deluded Matt Jones.
So, Regional Assemblies are nothing to do with Brussels are they? As with your ridiculous misestimation as to the cost of our EU membership, you are totally wrong on RA's also. The Regional assembly (unelected) network was introduced as a requirement of the Maastricht Treaty, 1992 (Article 198A). This treaty was signed by John Major, so is another 'blessing' from the Tories. The press then hailed the plans for 'elected' regional assemblies as "Prescott's brainchild" - really seeing the words "Prescott" and "brain" in the same sentence should have given the game away.
As for UKIP's chances in the European elections I hope for a massive UKIP vote because I want the anti-EU message to be massive.
A massive Tory vote will make no difference we will still be stuffed with the Brussels tyranny.

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