Odds-on UKIP leadership favourite, Steven Woolfe, should know today whether or not he’ll be allowed on the ballot

July 31st, 2016


The Moss Side born barrister looks well placed build on UKIP’s strengths in LAB’s Northern heartlands

Steven Woolfe MEP is the red hot odds on favourite to become UKIP leader in succession to Nigel Farage who stood down after the referendum. He’s said to have the backing of Arron Banks.

He’s articulate, telegenic and an effective communicator on TV. Unlike Farage who is very much of the South East, Woolfe is from the north West where the party has had some good results in the past. He was elected to the European Parliament in May 2014. He’s in his 40s, ambitious and on the face of it looks the ideal person to take the party forward in the post-Farage period.

The only problem at the moment is a little local difficulty over his eligibility. According to the Indy the party’s top brass is meeting today to resolve the question of whether he is actually a party member or not. The report goes on:

“..Under party rules, any candidate in the contest to succeed Nigel Farage must have been a party member for at least two years. Mr Woolfe was a Ukip MEP and party spokesman on immigration during all that period, but documents – also leaked – show that he allowed his individual party membership to lapse in December 2014, and renewed it only in March. A panel that is due to meet on Sunday, when nominations close, will have to decide whether that disqualifies him..”

UKIP has a record of being fairly strict on matters like this and it might be tricky to make a exception for him.

Hopefully we should get some news by the end of the day.

Judging by the betting (he’s a 63% chance on Betfair) punters think he will be on the ballot and will win the leadership.

Mike Smithson