'I'm not going to surrender to the mob': Farage blames ‘angry left’ and social media after milkshake attacks

13 June 2024, 08:15 | Updated: 13 June 2024, 09:26

Nigel Farage said he would not surrender to the 'mob'
Nigel Farage said he would not surrender to the 'mob'. Picture: LBC/Alamy

By Kit Heren

Nigel Farage has vowed not to "surrender to the mob", after having a milkshake thrown in his face and other objects hurled at him in two separate attacks.

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The Reform UK leader told LBC's Nick Ferrari at Breakfast that the reasons he had been targeted twice while out campaigning was that he challenges the political consensus, and because he gets out and about with ordinary voters.

Taking wide-ranging calls from LBC listeners, Mr Farage said he would lead a party of the centre-right, claimed that Brexit had been an economic success, and was forced to justify standing Reform parliamentary candidates who had made offensive comments.

Mr Farage was forced to duck for cover on Tuesday after a man hurled a missile at him while he was out campaigning. Last week a woman threw a milkshake on his face.

Two people have since been charged in connection with the assaults.

Mr Farage told Nick that there were two reasons why people want to throw things at him.

Read more: Reform candidate rants that ‘Islam and Nazis are the same thing’ in unearthed footage

Read more: Man charged with threatening behaviour after missiles hurled at Nigel Farage on campaign bus

Nigel Farage: "We need a coherent voice of opposition"

"One is that I'm the only political figure that walks into crowds of people. All the rest it's a factory with 20 staff [who are told] 'don't say a word or you'll be sacked'."

He added that the second reason was that he dares "to break the consensus," adding: "I dare to talk about things no one else is willing to touch," such as immigration.

Mr Farage said that the Conservatives were "scared of the mob."

"Do you know something," he added. "I am not going to surrender to the mob. Never."

Mr Farage said that "hard-left protesters" such as Black Lives Matter were professionalised and funded by NGOs and corporate America.

Reform candidate rants that ‘Islam and Nazis are the same thing’ in unearthed footage

Discussing the upcoming General Election, Mr Farage said that close polling data between his party and the Conservatives showed that "we're very close to a tipping point".

He added: "I've been arguing all the way through that the election is over, Labour have won. The real question here is who forms the opposition.

"What I'm certain of is that without the Reform voice, without many millions of votes and representatives in Parliament, the Conservatives will be incapable of providing opposition."

Asked if he would be capable of leading a new right-wing political party that included the Conservatives, Mr Farage said: "I think something new is going to emerge on the centre right. I don't know what it's called.

"But do I think I'm capable of leading a national opposition to a Labour Party with a big majority where I can stand up and hold them to account on issues? Yes."

Nigel Farage tells LBC Brexit is working when pressed by Nick Ferrari

Mr Farage declined to comment on whether he would want to lead the Conservative party, commenting that after the election "they may be dead, they may well be dead. This may well be the end of their journey."

He added: "I would be prepared to lead the centre right in this country. A centre right that stands up for small business, a centre right that believes in borders, a centre right that isn't scared of standing up for the British people."

Despite recent polls Mr Farage's party has been beset by controversies around some of its parliamentary candidate.

An LBC investigation found that Steve Chilcott, the party's candidate in Ealing and Southall, said "Islam and Nazis are the same thing" during a public rant in 2017.

Reform UK leader Nigel Farage in the LBC studio
Reform UK leader Nigel Farage in the LBC studio. Picture: Alamy

Mr Chilcott also said Paris was “full of Islamic, immigrant, scum”.

Mr Farage appeared to disown Mr Chilcott, saying he'd "never heard of him" repeatedly - despite being party leader.

He told Nick: "I am who I am - I've never pretended to be anything different. These are... ordinary people. That's how people out there speak. That's how they feel."

Another candidate, Ian Gribbin, who is standing for Bexhill and Battle, said that the UK would have been better off it the government had been neutral in the Second World War. When the comments were raised, he apologised.

Mr Farage said: "It's a blooming stupid thing to say and no question."

Reform UK leader Nigel Farage on the campaign trail on Wednesday
Reform UK leader Nigel Farage on the campaign trail on Wednesday. Picture: Alamy

Asked if he was going to be disciplined, the Reform leader said: "What can you do- his name's on the ballot paper.

"His name's on the ballot paper. I can't remove it."

Mr Farage, one of the key figures in getting the UK to leave the European Union, told Nick that Brexit had been a success in economic terms.

"We've gone from being the world's seventh biggest exporter to the world's fourth biggest exporter. That's good. And we're starting trade deals all over the world."

But he added that the major increases in immigration in recent years amounted to a "failure to deliver" the advantages of Brexit.

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