Tory Goes To Ukip: An Interview With The Other Side.
“Tories are voting on principle” ”It’s not a human right to be able to play on Mortal Combat 3″
I was told once that the Socialist Workers Party was like the birth child of Labour, born from its old members and raised by the would have been’s. If that image is true, then the closest thing to a child the Conservative Party has is UKIP. I met up with what I must admit was the first member of UKIP I had ever met, since our first meeting though I have met many more. Thomas Booker, a twenty-one year old who like so many are on the edge of finishing University. Between our first and second interview UKIP had gained a great victory and us Tories were paying the bill. Council election, of course. But I will return to that, the first question I wanted to know what the basic question and the answer I was given enlightened why he had joined.
ME: So, when did you become a member of UKIP?
BOOKER: March 2010, the run up to the general election. First time I could vote in a general election. First year of University, looking to be independent. I looked at all the parties manifestos, from Tory to Green. I felt the Conservatives didn’t look effective, Cameron seemed to be a bad opposition. Labour. No. I didn’t look at the BNP or the EDL, they are just–no.
ME: Do you agree with Neil Hamilton when he said the Conservative Party is the party of the past and UKIP is the party of the future?
BOOKER: Yes, small parties can only go up
ME: Both you and I were able to witness the local election results here in Sheffield, what do you feel happened?
BOOKER: Some blues went red. Old Tories, the voters who have been members and supporters all their life went purple. We must remember there was a poor turnout on May the third. UKIP did very well, in Sheffield they did better than the Conservatives.
ME: Where do you think the problem comes from? Is it UKIP being brilliant or the Tories being terrible?
BOOKER: The problem is in the current Cabinet, there is no one of 1992 Committee standard, no one singing off the same hymn sheet. The Cabinet, Cameron and CO are continuing Blair. But the right of the party don’t like that one bit.
ME: So as for the voters what do you think happened?
BOOKER: Tories are voting on principle, in the past they would have gone ‘well I agree with them [UKIP] in principle..but I want to keep Labour out’ now they’re saying ‘screw you’.
ME: Apart from ex-Tories, who do you think the strongest UKIP vote is coming from?
BOOKER: we’re very strong in the North, we’re becoming a problem not only for the Tories but also for Labour.
ME: What about in the south? Do you think they’re going to say the BNP?
BOOKER: No, the working class are starting to turn against the BNP, they are suddenly seeing them for what they are,
ME: Are these people going to UKIP?
BOOKER: No, they’re mostly going to the English Democrats.
ME: What do you think is the biggest problem with UKIP’s votes?
BOOKER: Too spread out, we have loads of votes all over.
ME: Where do you think the party needs to focus its attentions on the most?
BOOKER: Cornwall and Yorkshire.
ME: Both Labour and Conservatives have shown their feelings against giving the right to vote to prisoners, what do you think?
BOOKER: Well the left say they should not be denied the right to vote, well lets think about Eric Illsley, the Labour MP who was jailed for fraud, is it right that he is able to vote for the Member of Parliament who succeeds him? It’s wrong to allow someone who has done wrong to society to have a say on who governs society.
ME: If we gave prisoners the right to vote what problems may arise?
BOOKER: Some people may promise certain things to get the prison votes, that is wrong. The problem with prisons is..we don’t know whats going on in them. Firstly, if you’ve done wrong and you’ve been locked up doing wrong why should you have a TV and Xbox…it makes no sense. It’s not a human right to be able to play on Mortal Combat 3! But for MPs and candidates to campaign in these places is wrong, firstly there is a strong gang culture in prisons…giving prisoners the right to vote won’t solve anything and is just wrong.
ME: What do you think s the most important thing for the government to sort out right now?
BOOKER: The economy, people are angry because they can’t get jobs. And it’s not like our economy is picking up like others, other people are hurting our growth, other counties. You don’t need to be in a recession to cause others harm. Foreign should be cut, we can’t afford it.
ME: What do you think we need to do?
BOOKER: Cut the red-tape,
ME: And UKIP, what do you think, apart from the EU, what do you feel is the most important thing to the party right now,
ME: What do you think the government should do to cut unemployment?
BOOKER: Local job market, and education. People seem to look down on the trades, on the hands on careers, but we need them. Its part of the problem that society makes this idea that anything apart from academic is second class. Wrong! We should have the forces coming in to schools to recruit. There is nothing wrong with going into the army or going into the police force. They are things we need.
When we finished the formal interview, we talked about a variety of topics from the importance of Gay marriage to what our plans are for the future. I personally think UKIP have a bad name, a bad name which I have never been able to find in the people I meet.