So the plot continues to thicken. Soon after posting my “The Brexit Party, UKIP or Liberal Democrats?” article, one friend responded: “You’ve overlooked Change UK as an alternative Remain option. I believe that God is judging the Establishment parties, and that Christians with a political calling should join one of the new groups and try to influence them away from the immoral policies of the last 55 years. That Farage and others have their own flaws does not stop them being used as an instrument of the judgement – see Habakkuk”. I recognize his “Christian” perspective is not one most share, and while I partly share it I also wonder if God is having mercy so the UK swamp can be drained, it is a valid one and highlights the concern people have with mainstream politics, evidenced by how well the Independents and the Green Party (as well as the Lib Dems) did at the recent local elections.
I must confess I had rather dismissed Change UK, partly out of irritation that they are decidedly NOT no deal Brexiteers and yet fearing the embarrassment I had when the party I had dismissed previously, the Lib Dems, did so well. According to Wikipedia: “Change UK – The Independent Group (TIG) is a British pro-EU centre-right political party founded in February 2019 and registered in April that year. The group’s seven founding members were Members of Parliament (MPs) who resigned from the Labour Party, citing their dissatisfaction with the Labour leadership’s approach to Brexit and its handling of antisemitism within the party, to sit as a group of independent MPs under the name The Independent Group (TIG). In the days following their announcement they were joined by another MP resigning from Labour, citing similar reasons, and by three MPs who resigned from the Conservative Party, citing their opposition to that party’s Brexit policies, a lack of concern within the party for the “most vulnerable in society”, and what they saw as a right-wing takeover of the Conservatives. All members of the group support a second EU referendum. The group is considered to be centrist”. I searched for a logo to put out as my main image but failed, using instead the photo of founding members and their message of the likely reason.
My prediction that the Brexit Party will be the party who does best in the European elections remains. However, while I expect the trend we have already seen of Conservative and Labour losing out because of voter anger, some of the other, normally less likely parties, including Brexit antipathetic, like Change UK, may also do well. As a final note, and in checking out that Change UK will be contesting all the seats on offer on the May 23rd elections, I found this BBC article on all the runners and riders to be helpful.