Unseating Bercow will ‘kick in the door’ say UKIP
By Stephen Slominski
All Ukip’s candidates were drafted into Buckingham, John Bercow’s constituency at the weekend, in support of Nigel Farage, the party’s former leader, who is standing against the Speaker.
The other main parties are not fielding candidates, as is the convention in the speaker’s constituency.
Back in his Eastleigh constituency on Sunday night, Ukip candidate Raymond Finch enthused about his weekend’s canvassing in Buckingham: “It was the best reception I have experienced in five years of campaigning. I am confident we will win it. This will kick in the door for the rest of us.”
He claimed he found widespread dissatisfaction and even core Conservative voters who are disillusioned with Mr Bercow: “They resent him cosying up to Labour to gain the Speaker’s chair but his wife standing as a PPC [parliamentary party candidate] for the Labour party, was for many, the last straw.
“People simply can’t stand him.”
Mr Finch also reported that while canvassing he had been approached by committee members from Mr Bercow’s own constituency party who had voiced their support for Nigel Farage.
Conservative opinion seems to have turned against Mr Bercow, who won his seat in 2005, as a Conservative candidate, with an overwhelming majority of 14,000, the highest for the party last time out.
On Friday, columnist Simon Heffer wrote an article in the Daily Telegraph entitled “It’s time to turf John Bercow out of office.”
Heffer labelled the Speaker as being only “notionally a Conservative” and a “little creep” while praising Nigel Farage as a “serious candidate” and “charismatic”.
He concluded the piece with: “Any Conservative living in Buckingham should vote for Mr Farage.”
Mr Bercow’s election agent, Gordon Bell, said: “We’re getting a very warm response on the doorsteps. John has been the MP here for 13 years and has a very broad base of support.
“We’re not taking anything for granted, but we’re very confident that John will continue to represent his constituents.”