Nigel Farage, the leader of the UK Independence Party and a leading advocate of withdrawal from the EU, has suddenly resigned his party leadership, adding to the large list of people who have decided to take a lower profile following the Brexit vite.
I don’t get it. I can understand prime minister David Cameron resigning since he lost the vote. I can sort of understand Boris Johnson withdrawing from the leadership race after discovering that his support had largely evaporated. I am perplexed by the mass resignations of members of Labour Party’s shadow cabinet at just the time when they should be taking advantage of the ruling Conservative’s disarray. The only reason I can think of for that move is that many of the Labour MPs hate their party leader Jeremy Corbyn more than they want to form the next government.
But Farage? He should be doing a victory lap and seeking to use the Brexit vote to win more seats for his party in the next general election than the solitary seat it currently has. Farage himself has failed in his bid to be elected MP and is currently a member of the European parliament, a body that he despises. This would have been a good chance for him to win a seat in the next British parliament.
So why did he resign? It is true that he has resigned as leader twice before but why now? He has given the equivalent of the well-worn “to spend more time with my family” reason but I am skeptical. Any mavens of British politics who can provide plausible reasons?