|Press Office |
2 Queen Anne's Gate
London SW1H 9AA
|Dear UKIP members, |
Many of you have concerns about recent media coverage, and I want to answer some of them now.
We did anticipate that sections of the Conservative Press would attack UKIP in general and the new leader in particular. We were proved right and I must admit to a certain satisfaction at having drawn fire so quickly.
Naturally some media stories will be written to deliberately upset members and lose us future supporters. They will sometimes be false and frequently twisted, or 'spun' and there will be more of them. They are now out to get us, and we should be flattered by this overt recognition of the threat we pose. My appeal to each of you is to keep your nerve and treat the media with the caution it richly deserves.
Now for a few facts. The word "disband" has been taken out of context. In a long interview for the Times profile last Saturday, I was looking forward to the great day when we are out of the EU, after winning an 'in or out' referendum (a referendum delivered by Cameron after we had stood aside and helped him into 'Government'). On that day there would have been a complete realignment of British politics, led by a triumphant UKIP, with the political class rebuffed. It is in thinking about this happy prospect that I may have used the 'disband' word, and if I did it was a mistake and I shouldn't have done so. The party will never be mine to disband. That is a matter for the members alone.
As for the proposed deal with the Conservatives to stand aside at the 2010 election only, we knew that David Cameron was most unlikely to accept, because he is fully committed to membership of the EU. That's why he does not want an In or Out referendum. But - and this is important- we had to ask.
By rejecting the deal he has proved that he would rather risk losing the next general election (because of UKIP's participation) than consult the people of Britain on EU membership. Next time a Tory cries: "Vote UKIP and you'll let in Labour," you can reply: "We gave them the chance and the Conservatives refused it. Roll on the election." I feel this has turned out to be quite a coup for us, and we should be shouting it from the rooftops. We put our country before our party and they did the opposite.
I must also settle any worries that UKIP is merely the eurosceptic wing of the Conservative Party. This is not true. Under my leadership, UKIP will continue to target seats right across the political spectrum. The Labour vote will collapse at the next general election, and we must go all out for it as well as for that of the Lib Dems, many of whose members do not realise how Eurofanatic their party is.
I am proud to be the leader of such a marvellous Party.
Lord Pearson of Rannoch
The 'attack' by the Daily Telegraph was the same as the DT dished out to the LibLabCon MPs and Peers over expenses and house flipping and involvement in dodgy foreign financial transactions. It is not a personal attack on Pearson but part of a generic, long overdue, attack on the political elite of which Pearson is a fully paid up member.
The Telegraph did not twist facts as Pearson/Wood claim. The facts are on record and speak for themselves. As for quotes out of context, that is the bread and butter of UK politics. The media is constrained by time and space and will condense any interview to a few headline grabbing comments. Andrew Neil last week made it clear to Pearson he did not have the time to listen to Pearson's waffle.
Why offer a deal if you know it will be rejected? UKIP looks stupid and the Tories gain.
Will UKIP contest seats held by Tories who are members of the BOO, better off out group? Pearson is silent on that but will get grilled on it very soon by the media. The safest answer is to contest all Tory seats but he will fudge and waffle about it.
He shows how far out of touch he is with the vast majority of the UK populace if he thinks the collapsing Labour vote will go to UKIP! He is an old Etonian Tory ennobled by Mrs Thatcher whom the Labour voters loathed and blame for all the ills of our country. They would rather vote for the BNP who at least are not tainted with Thatcherism. Get on your bike Lord P as Norman Tebbitt , another Thatcherite Lord told the workers in the 80s!