Speaking in Essex, UKIP’s leader attacked big business and said that UKIP would call for an “immediate referendum” in order to help a government.
He said that the price for helping any major party into power would be an “immediate referendum” on EU membership.
The UKIP leader also said that the UK now has a “lethal combination of big government, big banks and big business.”
He went onto say that:
“we are living in an economy, where capitalism, free markets, enterprise and ambition have been replaced and are often crushed by a modern form of corporatism, which is supported by all three political parties, is supported by the trade union movement, and of course has, as it’s HQ, those big glass and steel buildings based in Brussels.”
Nigel Farage is portraying himself and his party as the gateway to change. By attacking “corporatism” and the lack of an EU referendum, UKIP are tapping into something - a desire for alterations to how the country operates. The party are still performing well in the polls, with YouGov’s latest putting them on 15%.
However, even if they get 15% of the votes, they will not get 15% of the seats. The party aims to hold the balance of power to make the changes it desires, but doing so will be hard from a starting point of two MPs. In order to force this ‘immediate referendum’, they will need to target seats well in places across the country to gain more than just a handful.
If UKIP do fail to hold a balance of power - in good news for Nigel Farage's party - there is some agreement amongst experts that UKIP’s goal of having an in/out referendum will be achieved. A recent article for the BBC highlighted the fact that political experts politics professor Vernon Bogdanor and political consultant Sir Bob Worcester think that an EU referendum will happen in the next parliament. Their argument is based on the fact that UKIP have been so successful, it will be futile to resist the calls for such a referendum.
UKIP are on the up, but even if they do not make significant gains in Westminster in 2015, their calls for a referendum may still be answered.