Standing a clown (Barry Allcock above) against Nikki Sinclaire in Meriden has seriously backfired on UKIP. The reaction here in the constituency is universally "are they mad?". But when it comes to scoring own goals UKIP are the creme de la creme. Let's face it, they elected the clown Lord Pearson as leader a few months ago!
Here is how UKIP boosted our campaign in Meriden by getting us this excellent coverage in the Birmingham Post:
Eurosceptic party UKIP has continued a bitter war against one of its own MEPs by standing a rival candidate against her in the general election.
Nikki Sinclaire, who was elected as a UKIP member of the European Parliament last year, is standing in Meriden as the candidate of the Solihull and Meriden Residents Association.
But her opponents will include Barry Allcock, who is standing as the official UKIP candidate.
Ms Sinclaire said she was “astonished and disappointed” that UKIP was standing against her.
The row is the latest twist in a long-running disupte between Ms Sinclaire and the party she still belongs to.
UKIP was ecstatic when Ms Sinclaire was elected as their second West Midlands MEP last June. It meant the party had beaten both Labour and the Liberal Democrats, which each returned only one MEP in the region.
But the celebrations were short-lived, after she publicly condemned UKIP’s decision to join a group in the European Parliament called the Europe of Freedom and Democracy group, which includes right-wing parties from across the EU.
She claimed that some of the parties involved, from other European countries, supported anti-Semitism and violence.
As a result, UKIP withdrew the party whip, which means Ms Sinclaire is now officially an independent MEP. However, she continues to be a member of the party.
UKIP’s national executive also sacked her as the party’s general election candidate in Meriden. But she stood anyway, as a candidate of new party Solihull & Meriden Residents’ Association, which cites its ethos as “restoring political power to local people.”
Ms Sinclaire said UKIP had broken its own rules by standing against her.
She said: “My views on Britain’s membership of the EU is widely known, this is another breach of trust and discredits the stated policy of not standing against known eurosceptics.”
A UKIP spokesman said: “We have candidates standing in all constituencies in the region except Aldridge-Brownhills, where there was already a eurosceptic candidate, and Nuneaton, where our candidate had to pull out.”
Here is the original article.