Election 2017: Ukip will not contest three Redbridge constituencies to help pro-Brexit candidates get elected
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Ukip will not be fielding candidates in three Redbridge constituencies in the upcoming general election, in attempt to help pro-Brexit candidates get elected.
The anti-EU party will not be contesting in Ilford North, Leyton and Wanstead and Chingford and Woodford Green, the Recorder understands.
They are hoping Leave supporters will back the Tory Lee Scott in Ilford North, in attempt to unseat the Labour incumbent and Remain supporter Wes Streeting.
Two years ago Ukip candidate Philip Hyde received 4,355 votes, far more than Mr Streeting’s slender winning margin of 589.
In Leyton and Wanstead they are standing aside in favour of the Labour MP John Cryer, who backed Leave, and in Chingford and Woodford Green the party hopes supporters will vote for prominent Brexiteer Iain Duncan Smith.
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Explaining the decision, the party’s Havering group leader Cllr Lawrence Webb told the Recorder “Ukip was putting the country first”.
“One of our core principles is to take back control of our borders, and many of our policies can only be carried out once we get out of the EU.
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“Clearly campaigners like Gina Miller and others are a threat to the democratic process.”
Mrs Miller and Remain group Open Britain are trying to gain cross-party support to help MPs who are against a “hard Brexit”, and stop prominent Brexiteers, such as Mr Duncan Smith from getting elected.
Cllr Webb continued: “We are doing what we can to ensure that as many pro-Brexit MPs get elected.”
Ukip’s full list of constituencies they will not be contesting is to be revealed tomorrow, but Cllr Webb confirmed that in these three Redbridge seats they would not have candidates standing.