In April 1979 the Labour administration had to rely on the Conservative Party to help it pass an emergency budget. The Tories, led by Margaret Thatcher, cooperated on condition that 1p was knocked off income tax, allowing them to campaign that even before the election they’d managed to bring down tax.
There’s no cooperation between UKIP and the Coalition Government, but Nigel Farage’s party can lay claim to a not dissimilar feat: without a single MP in Westminster, UKIP’s rising stock with grassroots voters has forced David Cameron to announce he will introduce legislation forcing a referendum on EU membership in 2015.
Of course, we’ve been here before. Both Tories and Liberal Democrats promised to hold an "in-out" referendum, if further powers were passed to the EU, in their 2010 manifestos. They did so with impunity, as Gordon Brown had infamously ratified the Lisbon Treaty (EU Constitution) in July 2008.
And so we come to this strangest of times: the County Council elections that feel like a General Election. And given the continual drain of power from Westminster to Brussels, successful candidates will have more effect on their constituents’ lives than MPs, and will be working at the coal-face of the EU’s attrition on our lives. Schools becoming babels of foreign languages, communities losing their hearts as the smoking ban closes down pubs, police forces hobbled by cultural sensitivities…the list seems endless.
More than anything, though, please think on how UKIP, although continually increasing in popularity, was thrown into the spotlight as a major player right now. That was because foster-parents in Eastleigh had their East European charges removed by social workers due to their membership of UKIP. Such is the degraded state of democracy in Britain today.
It’s time to start moving back from the abyss. That's why I'll be voting UKIP.