UKIP\’s First MP

The UK Independence Party will today announce it has gained its first member of Parliament after a former Conservative MP agreed to join the party just nine days before the local elections.

Bob Spink, the MP for Castle Point in Essex, said he was "increasingly disappointed" with the Conservative Party, which expelled him last month. The defection is being heralded as a coup by Ukip.

That\’s not bad you know, for a party founded only in 1992, to get an MP by 2008. Took the Scots Nats how long? 40-50 years?

I remember when it all first started actually, living in Bath still, a friend was a Tory activist and there was outrage that Alan Sked sould stand against Chris Patten. I certainly didn\’t think it would come this far this soon.

12 thoughts on “UKIP\’s First MP”

  1. Getting someone else’s castoffs isn’t that impressive. By that standard UKIP are a good decade behind the Referendum Party who took in anouther expelled Tory George Gardiner.

  2. That story is a lot more impressive than I thought. I read:

    after a former Conservative MP agreed to join the party

    as meaning he was a ‘former MP’, ie had quit parliament.

  3. I see he had resigned the Tory whip, or it was withdrawn (although even the Tories say it was withdrawn because he was about to resign).

    He should now of course resign his seat and fight a by-election.

  4. Hmmm, my rather scathing comment appears to be “still awaiting moderation” despite later, more supportive, comments being published. The death of free speech, eh?

    Tim adds: Too many links in it. Automatically spammed. Approved now.

  5. Thinking some more, I think he would be advised to resign and fight a by-election. I think that would give him a much larger chance of winning the seat than waiting until a General Election, as the media coverage would be higher. And if he won he would probably hold it at the next election.

  6. After all the criticism of the One-Eyed Bandit’s uncontested takeover from the last chappie, er wossisname, er.. oh I forget, and previous criticisms of other nonentities who crossed the floor in search of a longer period of snout-in-trough, it would have seemed gracious for this obviously-highly-principled politician to have stood down and consulted his constituents in a bye-election on whether they wished him to continue under the banner of UKIP.

    Good luck to him were the answer sought, and was “yes”. If not, he’s just another squealing, grunting porcine. Oink.

  7. Ah, but we may have a party system but we elect individuals. He can change parties without forcing a by-election but a party can’t change individuals without forcing one. It’s a dilemma. Part of me feels he should give the voters in his patch (a sizeable portion of whom will have voted for him only as a Conservative) a chance to choose, another part of me thinks that his name was bigger than the party logo on his row of the ballot paper. Tough call. I’d stand down and I’d recommend others to but the fact is that he doesn’t have to.

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