11 Jul 2016
Mass reports of defections from the Conservative Party to UKIP have been reported on social media today following the impending ‘coronation’ of Home Secretary Theresa May to leader of the Conservative Party and soon-to-be Prime Minister.
Following the news that Brexiteer Andrea Leadsom was set to withdraw from the Tory leadership race – leaving Ms. May to succeed David Cameron as Prime Minister on Wednesday – long-term Tory voters and members are tearing up their membership cards and joining the UK Independence Party (UKIP) seemingly en masse.
Life-long Tory voters were cancelling their memberships to join UKIP as early as midday, announcing their moves on Twitter and Facebook, ostensibly in protest at Ms. May’s authoritarian and anti-Brexit views. Some also protested about her term in office as Home Secretary, which has seen the curtailment of civil liberties, the praise of Shariah law, and the failure to abide by a 2010 manifesto pledge to drastically reduce migration into the UK.
— blinkeredbritain (@blinkerdbritain) July 11, 2016
Sad that Leadsom has quit. Dirty politics from some MP’s and media. I have voted Tory for the last 30 years but will now be joining UKIP
— Steve Lawton (@stevel1955) July 11, 2016
Including those just embarking on joining:
Just cancelled my Conservative Party membership application
— Peter J Hallett (@goldfields10) July 11, 2016
How do I cancel my conservative membership? #boycotttories
— Stuart King (@vivacarpediem1) July 11, 2016
Many members clung on to their membership to vote for Ms. Leadsom, who seemed to be the grassroots’ favourite. On her withdrawal, she appeared to take supporters with her, many of whom blamed ‘dirty politics’ for forcing her out of the race. But no longer seeing the Conservative Party as their natural home, joined UKIP.
Upon her withdrawal, many Tories who blamed ‘dirty politics’ for forcing her out of the race decided the Conservative Party was no longer their natural home, and joined UKIP.
UKIP sources told Breitbart London that the membership department had seen a major influx of supporters on the back of the day’s events, but were unable to put a number on new membership applications.
I kept my membership of the party just to vote for Leadsom – as soon as I get home I’m burning my membership card and joining @UKIP
— Jack Hadfield (@ToryBastard_) July 11, 2016
@andrealeadsom I completely respect & understand your decision. Now I’m joining UKIP
— Richard Titmus (@TitmusRichamus) July 11, 2016
Tonight i shall be joining @UKIP
— #leadsomforleader (@no1confused) July 11, 2016
On Sunday, outgoing leader of UKIP Nigel Farage answered callers’ questions on LBC radio, discussing the future of the party.
My vote has now just changed to UKIP.
— SWAN,art50now (@JimSwanny) July 11, 2016
On social media, the electorate stated concern over delays in triggering Article 50, the formal mechanism for leaving the European Union (EU), and Ms. May’s commitment to not reneging on the voters’ position to stop automatic free movement.
— Giles Damian Henry (@gilesdhenry) July 11, 2016
BLAST: Lord Tebbit has launched a scathing attack on Theresa May
But Lord Tebbit described her as “Ukip’s greatest recruiting sergeant” before attacking her record on immigration, police reform and her failure to back the winning side in the EU referendum.
The 85-year-old peer said Brexit favourite Andrea Leadsom had been the victim of an intense smear campaign by Mrs May’s supporters and that much of the “hatred” she endured was due to her “opposition to gay marriage as much as her Euroscepticism”.
NUMBER 10: Theresa May is preparing to move into Downing Street
Mrs May is now set to become Ukip’s greatest recruiting sergeant
“These footsoldiers who knock on doors, deliver leaflets and raise money will not just stay at home. They will campaign against Mrs May.”
Lord Tebbit, a stalwart of Margaret Thatcher’s cabinets of the 1980s and a former Conservative Party chairman, said Mrs May, who campaigned for the UK to stay in the EU will now have go to Brussels to “tell Herr Juncker that she made a mistake and that really she wanted to leave”.
READY: Theresa May prepares to become Prime Minister
“But I doubt that the jurors in Brussels will be convinced. They know, as we all do, that Mrs May is convinced our future lies in Brussels, not Westminster.
“Not only that, but she will have to persuade both us here at home and the bankers, investors and business people across the world that although she signed up to Mr Cameron’s “Dodgy Dossier” predicting all the alarming consequences of Brexit, she knew all along it was little more than a scare story.