Nigel Farage compares himself to Margaret Thatcher on 11th anniversary of her passing

Nigel Farage has confessed that he sees similarities between himself and the late Margaret Thatcher.

Speaking during a wide-ranging interview that coincides with the 11th anniversary of her passing, Mr Farage said both of them were conviction activists who fought for what they believed in.

Asked by The Telegraph’s Camilla Tominey whether the country needs “another Thatcher” and whether that is a role he could take up, Mr Farage said he “wouldn’t put himself in that category”.

He praised her as “a fighter who stood up and fought for issues, not because focus groups told her she should but because she believed it was the right direction to go in”.

He said: “That’s what political leadership is and I think many of the campaigns I’ve fought over the years, I’ve started off in very very minority positions without majority support in the country behind my views but through sheer persistence and perhaps being right I’ve managed to get people to come with me.

“So if there was a similarity it’s being unafraid to fight for things that may not be trendy today but may well become so in the future.

“Her level of resilience was quite extraordinary.”

The politician-turned-broadcaster argued that Lady Thatcher’s husband, Dennis, was “probably a bigger factor in Thatcher’s success than many people acknowledge”.

He joked that seeing Dennis Thatcher at the bar of their mutual club back in the day “made me realise that I didn’t have a drink problem!”

Mr Farage also addressed his political future with Reform UK, suggesting that while the party is doing very well in the polls it could perform better should he return to the helm.

He praised the party’s leader, Richard Tice, who’s performance is “becoming more and more confident”, and said the party’s policy offering is much more competent than both Sir Keir Starmer and Rishi Sunak.

“Already there are more leave voters from the 2016 referendum who are going to vote Reform than Conservative.

“In the Midlands and the North, Reform is neck and neck if not a point ahead of the Conservatives already, and I think there comes a moment – if that momentum continues, which I think it will – where if you’re a Red Wall Conservative MP the only way you can save your skin is to stand for Reform,”

He suggested such a moment would then allow Reform to tell the Tories to stand down and avoid splitting the vote in order to prevent Labour slipping through the cracks.

Asked whether polling for Reform UK would go up if he had a more prominent front-line role, Mr Farage joked: “That depends if people like me or not!”

He then confessed Reform’s polling numbers “might” improve.

Mr Farage said he “believes” that conversations with disaffected Conservative MPs are ongoing, though he has “no executive role of any kind at all within the party”.

He praised this morning’s joint press conference of Richard Tice and Lee Anderson as “really good stuff”.

SOURCE

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