Nigel Farage promises narrower borders and tax cuts in election ‘contract’

Nigel Farage promises narrower borders and tax cuts in election ‘contract’

Nigel Farage, whose entry into the UK election has further damaged Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s hopes of victory, outlined his government’s plans on Monday, describing them as the first step toward his party becoming the main right-wing party in British politics.

Farage said the election had come too early for his Reform Party, but called on supporters of Sunak’s Conservative Party to “join the rebellion” and presented his group as the only one that could take on the Labour Party, whose leader Keir Starmer is expected to become the next British prime minister.

Farage is one of Britain’s best-known and most divisive politicians and has pushed successive governments to take a more aggressive stance on reducing immigration. He played a key role in the country’s 2016 vote to leave the European Union.

But his career was spent campaigning on the margins of British politics, running unsuccessfully for a seat in parliament seven times and leading parties that, despite attracting millions of votes, have failed to weaken the grip of Britain’s two main parties: the Conservatives and Labour.

This time, Farage is standing in Clacton-on-Sea in southeast England, where polls suggest he could win a seat in parliament, but under the British electoral system his party would only win a few seats across the country at most.

“We are not pretending that we are going to win this general election,” Farage said at the launch of a 24-page policy document, which he described as a “contract” with voters for the next five years.

But he added: “Our aim and our ambition is to build a bridge in parliament and be a genuine opposition to the Labour government.”

Farage’s unexpected entry into the electoral race – after initially saying he would not contest the election and wished to focus on Donald Trump’s campaign in the United States – has split support among right-wing voters in the United Kingdom.

Labour is ahead by about 20 percentage points in opinion polls and is projected to win a landslide majority. Reformists overtook conservatives in a poll last week and Farage is aiming to win six million votes in the July 4 election.

The reformers have promised to immediately curb “non-essential” immigration, abandon the European Convention on Human Rights and push migrants arriving in small boats back to France before they can land on British shores. They also proposed an additional payroll tax on companies that employ foreign workers.

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