We’re getting into the final weeks of this long Leadership contest so today’s letters reflect the different opinions of members. The first letter is from our reader Mary Singleton:
A coalition is forming to stop Anne Marie, well there’s a surprise. Having failed to stop her getting on the ballot paper initially and then failing to sustain a legal challenge, those who will stoop to anything have fallen back on plan C. It’s quite an expensive option for those three people. Marion and David Coburn stood no chance anyway, but Ben would have collected a few votes but still not won. I hope no one has agreed to pay them their lost deposits! It would be helpful if these three candidates were to publish statements that they had not had a promise to compensate them. If you think I am cynical, you are correct. I do not trust the people behind the scenes who do not want Anne Marie at any price. The more I see of Anne Marie the more I am confident she is the one for UKIP. She is inspirational and can handle hostile media and that is probably the biggest test for our future leader. She is gaining more support day by day. UKIP needs the shakeup she will cause. We need to prune our dead wood who are committed to the mediocrity of the centre ground.
Respectfully, Mary Singleton
The second letter comes from our reader and contributor Jim Makin:
Much ado about our leadership election, as is right and proper, but I would like to illustrate a point.
As a consequence of the referendum campaign I signed up to the Labour Leave email list (shock! horror!). Since then I would suggest that they seem to me to have been rather more focused on the Brexit cause than our own leadership, but that is by the bye.
Their latest missive to plop into my inbox puts across a serious policy for rebalancing our economy, and I am sufficiently impressed to draw attention to it (watch here). We are used to Labour’s economic and general incompetence so it’s a bit of a surprise to see a well-argued economic case from this quarter, and very encouraging considering the dearth of sensible ideas from other parties (not to mention the Chancellor).
My suggestion to any UKIP Leadership candidate who reads this is that they should seriously consider this proposal – we need a well-founded economic policy to underpin the usual superficial platitudes that get trotted out.
It’s nice to know what objectives a candidate stands for, but for me the winner will be the candidate who can explain how they propose to achieve them.
Respectfully, Jim Makin
Finally, our comment poster ‘icini’ has sent in the following letter:
UKIP was formed to save the pound, get a referendum on the EU and to win a leave vote. We achieved these things against remarkable odds. What we have not yet managed is full escape from control by Brussels, so there is still much work to do on that front. We do not need to manufacture a new reason to exist, we have not yet left the EU or escaped from all that comes with membership, loss of sovereignty, open borders, heavy economic migration, European regulations and costs, subservience to France, Germany and the rest. It’s something that is still very much in the balance and there are also many important secondary targets for our party. Foreign aid, democracy, vanity projects, education, the gap between rich and poor and so on.
There is a danger that adopting a new main policy that is highly controversial or proposing new laws intended to target one section of our new and older migrant communities or their religion will mask what we are about and simply add to the supply of mud available to the establishment and the rabid hard left. It’s exactly what our opponents are hoping for.
Those who appear to be mainly concerned with one religion need to start their own new party and cease trying to hijack UKIP. Since they believe there is great support for that point of view it should do well. Perhaps they know it will flop, it’s simply not the British way. We do have freedom of speech, we also have freedom of worship. Neither should be abused. Leave the problem of the illegals, criminals, terrorists, extremists and abusers to the police and security services and actively help existing legal migrants to integrate and adapt to our cultural norms, whilst retaining the more harmless and reasonable elements of their ancestral identity, as so many previous groups have. It will take time but if we work at it, it we can change things and once we have border control again, the problems will diminish anyway. Diplomacy, compromise, education and persuasion are reasonable tools to tackle a problem. Hard confrontation simply engenders hatred on all sides, it’s stupid and it rarely works anyway.
We have a reduced and small head office, presently struggling to cope and senior officials who are attacked by all sides, along with the NEC who we all voted for. Leave them alone now, they made mistakes but I believe they did their best and our survival as a viable party post Nigel is down to their efforts. Our organisational structure is flawed but the new leader will make his or her own decisions and changes, accept them and move on or move out, otherwise we are just another rabble of a protest group.
The election for leader is nearly upon us and I have now decided who to vote for, subject to watching some hustings on Sunday. It will be someone who understands the art of negotiating, not an individual who seeks to use my party to push a personal agenda.