Election 2017: Nigel Farage believes Ukip could win Dagenham and Rainham seat
PUBLISHED: 17:04 02 June 2017 | UPDATED: 17:39 02 June 2017
Former Ukip leader Nigel Farage joined the general election campaign trail – and said that he feels the party has a “real chance” of winning the Dagenham and Rainham seat.
Mr Farage, along with candidate Peter Harris and other party members, travelled through Heathway on an open-top bus this afternoon, imploring passers-by to “vote Ukip” through a megaphone.
When the two got off the bus outside the shopping centre, they were greeted by voters with a raft of questions, including on Brexit and the recent terror attacks.
Even those too young to vote wanted to speak to Mr Farage, with a young boy asking: “If Ukip wins this area, what do you think they’re going to do?” and others posing for selfies.
Asked by the Post whether Mr Harris could win, Mr Farage said: “When he ran in 2015, he wasn’t that much of a known quantity, but now he’s got a track record. He’s now known, and that makes a difference.”
He added that being “against an MP that backed remain” in a Brexit-voting constituency would also help and that Thursday’s election “could be really interesting”.
Today’s visit was the first day Mr Farage took part in campaigning, and he explained that he didn’t come out earlier to avoid being branded a “backseat driver” following his resignation as party leader last year.
“I’m not in charge, it’s up to others, but now that we’re towards the end of the campaign, it’s right and proper that I show that I still absolutely support Ukip,” he said.
He admitted that things have been “very hard” for the party, which lost a lot of seats to the Conservatives in local council elections around the country last month.
“Those were in the days when [Theresa May] could say she was a strong and stable leader and people weren’t laughing,” he added.
“I think there is a move back towards Ukip now from those voters who were tempted by what she had to say.”
Asked whether he would consider running again, Mr Farage said: “It’s so far off, I haven’t even thought about it.”