Independence from Europe

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Independence from Europe
Leader Mike Nattrass
Founded 2012
Ideology Euroscepticism
European affiliation None
International affiliation None
European Parliament group None
House of Commons
0 / 650
House of Lords
0 / 754
European Parliament
0 / 73
Local government
3 / 21,871
Website
www.aipmep.org

Independence from Europe is a British political party launched in 2012[1] by Mike Nattrass MEP following his deselection as a candidate by the UK Independence Party (UKIP) and subsequent departure from the party.[2]

History[edit]

Nattrass was elected as an MEP for UKIP in 2004, but was deselected by the party in 2013[3] and subsequently left it. He launched a new party, under the name An Independence Party, in November 2013. The Electoral Commission records that Nattrass registered the party name An Independence from Europe on 20 June 2012[4] and records annual financial statement for the party filed until 2014.[5]

The party has three councillors on Lincolnshire County Council,[6] who had been elected as UKIP candidates but defected.

The party stood a full slate of candidates in all the English regions at the 2014 European Parliament elections under the name An Independence from Europe. Candidates included Laurence Stassen,[7] a sitting independent MEP in the Netherlands, who was elected there as a candidate for the Party for Freedom; she stood in South East England as the number one candidate.

The similarity of the name and the party's description as 'United Kingdom Independence' has led UKIP to complain to the Electoral Commission. A spokesman for the Commission said that An Independence from Europe's name or self-description are not confusing or offensive, and are thus allowed.[8]

Its first electoral test was at the 2014 European Parliament election, where the party collected just under 1.5% of the national vote and failed to win any seats.[9]

Chris Pain, suspended by UKIP in 2013 and later expelled, stood for the party in the 2015 general election in Boston and Skegness.[10]

The party was required, by the Electoral Commission, to change its name to the less-confusing 'Independence from Europe'.[11]

Political views[edit]

The party supports the United Kingdom leaving the European Union[12] and is opposed to HS2. Its range of policies can be found in its manifesto.[13]

Nattrass told Andrew Neil on the Daily Politics that the new grouping did not believe in privatisation, especially for health services, and "we are to the left of UKIP".[14]

Electoral performance[edit]

In the European Parliament election 2014, An Independence from Europe contested nine multi-member constituence is England. With 235,124 votes (1.43% of the national vote), it finished in seventh place.[9] It was the highest placed party to not win a seat, and polled more votes than the British National Party and the English Democrats. Following the election, UKIP claimed that An Independence from Europe's intervention had cost it a seat in South West England. Had UKIP polled an additional 15,158 votes, it would have won a third seat in the region instead of the Green Party; UKIP claimed that the 23,169 votes polled by An Independence from Europe meant it missed out on this third seat.[15]

At the 2015 general election, the party stood five candidates but all lost their deposits.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Electoral Commission: Independence from Europe Registration summary (Ref. PP1918)
  2. ^ "UKIP angry over 'confusing' Euro election name", BBC News, 23 April 2014
  3. ^ "Mike Nattrass: West Midlands MEP 'failed' selection for UKIP". BBC News. 27 August 2013. Archived from the original on 27 August 2013. Retrieved 7 September 2013. 
  4. ^ Electoral Commission registration search
  5. ^ Electoral Commission: Independence from Europe Statement of Accounts for 2012, 2013 and 2014
  6. ^ Lincolnshire County Council, Your county councillor
  7. ^ "About me". Laurence Stassen. Retrieved 5 June 2014. [dead link]
  8. ^ "UKIP angry over similarly named rival party", BBC News, 23 April 2014
    - Christopher Hope "Ukip might lose Euro elections because of mistaken identity, says Nigel Farage", Daily Telegraph, 16 May 2014
  9. ^ a b "UK European election results", BBC News, 26 May 2014
  10. ^ Paul Gallagher, "Ukip's suspended members: Janice Atkinson joins long list as police investigate her expenses". The Independent, 20 March 2015
  11. ^ "Election 2015 smaller parties: Independence from Europe". BBC News. 1 April 2015. Retrieved 24 April 2015. 
  12. ^ An Independence from Europe YouTube video
  13. ^ AIP; Basic Policy in Brief
  14. ^ "An Independence from Europe's Mike Nattrass on elections", BBC News, 14 May 2014
  15. ^ "An Independence from Europe 'costs UKIP a seat'". BBC News. 26 May 2014. Retrieved 5 June 2014. 

External links[edit]