Ukip-vs-EUkip

We aim to inform YOU & provide an archive re: Ukip to TRY to make it fit for purpose

Some UKIP members are ‘hooligans’ befouling EUroScepticism

Posted by Greg Lance - Watkins (Greg_L-W) on 30/01/2013

Some UKIP members are ‘hooligans’ befouling EUroScepticism

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Mea Culpa
I apologise for my poor posting record recently but have spent almost all of the time from 09-Jan > 27-Jan in hospital.
Fortunately unrelated directly to my battle with cancer since Nov-1998, which at the moment seems won, as my full body CT Scan last Thursday was showing absolutely no sign of cancer for the first time in 14 years.
Details, for those seeking the encouragement of the story of my survival against horrendous odds, will be on my health blog shortly.
I shall be heavily plagiarising the works of others (with permission, where required) to infill such gaps as seem apposite over the next few days – including Team Junius.
Thanks for the many messages of get well and the incredible support given to Lee by friends whilst I was in hospital.
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Bernal Revert photo - European Parliament

Some UKIP members are ‘hooligans’ – claims ECR vice-president

by Justin Stares

30 January 2013

Certain British Eurosceptics are ‘dangerous when drunk’, claims an ally of David Cameron’s Conservative Party in Brussels. PublicServiceEurope.com reports

Britain’s United Kingdom Independence Party – or UKIP as it now prefers to be known – is full of “hooligans” and “bar fighters”, alleged a vice president of one of the European Parliament’s political groups on Tuesday. Some of UKIP’s Eurosceptic MEPs “are against everything in the European Union apart from the money and the allowances they get themselves,” according to Derk-Jan Eppink MEP, vice-president of the European Conservatives and Reformists – the group that is home to Britain’s Conservative Party MEPs.

Talking at a conference organised by the Association of European Journalists – Eppink, a former journalist and one-time European Commission cabinet member, gave UKIP’s Brussels contingent both barrels. It was important for people know “what they are like”, he claimed. “If they get drunk they get very dangerous,” was one of the allegations he put to a gathering at the Brussels Press Club. “They present themselves as white knights but they are not.” If UKIP MEPs did any work, it was usually “appalling”, he alleged.

British Eurosceptics often did not bother to turn up at committees or parliament plenary sessions. Centre-right parties have on occasion been “one or two votes short of stopping the left” in key votes that were lost because UKIP MEPs were “not there”, it was said. And UKIP was a party of “vox-pop politicians” with “no grassroots support”, Eppink claimed when continuing his diatribe. Eurosceptics took European funding and “funnelled it into their party”, he added, and UKIP’s parliamentary members often flitted between parties or found themselves “investigated” – he suggested.

Debating Europe with UKIP supporters often turned into an “aggressive” exchange involving “abusive language”, said Eppink. “They are sort of hooligans,” he told the gathering “apart from Nigel Farage” – the UKIP leader. And UKIP supporters and British Eurosceptics in general were “hard to convince with facts and figures”, said Eppink, a Dutchman who has crossed over into Belgian politics. “A positive agenda is very hard to sell,” he said – a problem he predicted would face British Prime Minister David Cameron if and when he campaigns for the UK to remain in the EU ahead of a referendum.

Eppink’s venting of the spleen seemed to have been fuelled in part by what he described as “a very unpleasant dinner” in the UK that descended into a shouting match with a British academic. “I discovered afterwards that he was linked to UKIP,” Eppink said. He often travelled to Britain at the invitation of British Tory MEPs in the ECR group, he said, visiting towns such as Nottingham “where I would never go as a tourist”.

The Tories in the ECR group were almost all in favour of remaining in the 27-member bloc, he claimed; citing both personal contacts and Twitter feeds as evidence. Only Conservative MEP Daniel Hannan was likely to vote for the UK to withdraw, he predicted. Cameron’s Europe speech earlier this month was, in Eppink’s opinion, an attempt to regain ground lost to UKIP. The British PM was “asking questions other leaders were afraid to ask”, he said, such as whether Europe could continue with its current “one size fits all” approach; or whether it should adopt a more flexible à la carte formation.

A piecemeal approach to European integration was in reality already taking shape, he pointed out. In addition to the Schengen free movement area, the eurozone, and the various opt-outs enjoyed by countries such as the UK, Denmark and Ireland, Brussels law-makers were increasingly resorting to “enhanced cooperation” – a process by which a group of nine or more member states can forge ahead with laws of their own. “Without flexibility the EU will not work,” said Eppink, who described himself as a Euroscepetic in Brussels but a Europhile in the UK.

Issuing a strong rebuttal to Eppink’s criticisms of UKIP, party spokesman Gawain Towler said: “I wonder if Mr Eppink’s speech was made ‘after lunch’. It seems a little intemperate. UKIP of course is not in the European Parliament to tinker round the edges but to work to get the UK out of the EU. That Cameron has offered a referendum is a small victory, that Dirk-Jan believes that 24 out of 25 Tory MEPs will vote to stay in the EU, rather makes our point about that party.”

Eppink became a well-known figure in Brussels following the success of his book Life of a European Mandarin, which lifted the lid on the workings of the European Commission. In it he describes the shenanigans of lobbyists and officials and underlines the extent to which key decisions are made out of the public eye. He served in the cabinets of former Dutch Commissioner Frits Bolkestein and Siim Kallas, the current European Transport Commissioner.

To view the original article CLICK HERE
This is clearly much of the reason why Cameron’s Tories do not see UKIP as any kind of a threat to them in domestic elections, where UKIP consistently average around 3% and even when they do bet6ter they, by their own proud boast, take votes from both Labour & Tories.

To date UKIP have patently failed to make any kind of a breakthrough in domestic politics and are dependent on the anonymity of a rigged party list system to make what gains they do win The EU, where the electorate use them as a dustbin for protest votes at a time when the majority are grossly unhappy with our membership of The EU – UKIP has failed totally to capitalise on what was once their core message Leave-The-EU – beguiled by dreams of enrichment through a political status that they have to date failed to grasp in any meaningful manner.

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Regards,

Greg_L-W..

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