Theresa May's Chequers plan drives Brexiteers back to UKIP
PUBLISHED: 15:22 02 August 2018 | UPDATED: 15:30 02 August 2018
2016 Getty Images
The EU referendum was meant to unite the right to help the Tories see off a threat from Labour - but Europe has once again sparked a big rift in the right.
According to party insiders UKIP’s membership has soared by 15% in the last month, with an extra 3,200 joining in July 2018.
The party has also seen a slight rise in the polls from approximately 2% to 5% and above since Theresa May revealed her Chequers plan.
Experts have warned the Conservatives that a resurgence of UKIP will be a gift to Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party.
Matthew Goodwin, politics professor at the University of Kent, told Sky News: “I think it could be pretty significant. Before Chequers, UKIP were averaging 3%, after Chequers they have been averaging about 6%.
“When you look at Conservative voters, people who actually voted for the Conservatives last year, about 60% say they are open to a party on the right that in unequivocally committed to Brexit.
“In a tight election race, Labour versus Conservative, 10% going to UKIP, even 7% or 8% going to UKIP could make all the difference.”
The resurgence of UKIP remains relative with membership still half of the size it was in 2015, but it is a change of fortunes for the party, which lost all but one councillor in local elections last year.
Become a Supporter
The New European is proud of its journalism and we hope you are proud of it too. We believe our voice is important - both in representing the pro-EU perspective and also to help rebalance the right wing extremes of much of the UK national press. If you value what we are doing, you can help us by making a contribution to the cost of our journalism.