The Conservatives have suffered their first electoral defeat under Boris Johnson. Good!

Losing the Brecon and Radnorshire seat by a narrow squeak to the Lib Dems was just the short, sharp shock the Tories needed if we are to end up with a meaningful Brexit on October 31.

Had their candidate Chris Davies won, the Tories might have become complacent.

As it was, he was pipped to the post by the leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats Jane Dodds who beat him by 1,425 votes. But that’s only because The Brexit Party candidate Des Parkinson split the vote. Had his 3,331 gone to the Tories instead, this would easily have been enough to get them over the line.

Some people are saying that this is a disaster for Boris’s government: it now has a working majority of one in Parliament – not nearly enough to get through whatever Brexit-or-bust scheme that Boris and his team need to deliver if Britain is not to become a Venezuela-style basket case under Marxist Opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn.

I disagree.

It seems to me that the most plausible danger facing Britain right now is that Boris fluffs Brexit by dusting off Theresa May’s disastrous Withdrawal Agreement, pretending that the only thing wrong with it is the Backstop, and keeping Britain permanently in hock to the Euroweenies by remaining under the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice.

That’s why we so badly need The Brexit Party as a viable force to keep Boris honest.

I agree with Durkin. But it’s a fine balance, isn’t it?

Too weak a Brexit Party means that the Tories could revert to form and become squishy centrists.

Too strong – or cocky or vindictive – a Brexit Party and it could wipe out many perfectly sound Tories candidates in the next general election which, rumours are, might take place in spring.

Today The Brexit Party has announced that it is ‘preparing’ to fight all 650 seats across the country in a Brexit General Election.

That word ‘preparing’ is nicely ambiguous. I’m presuming, when push comes to shove, that The Brexit Party will not be contesting those seats where the Conservative candidate is a solid European Research Group member who voted down the Withdrawal Agreement. But equally, I’m hoping its research goes a bit deeper than that and it considers marginal seats such as Bishop Auckland, where the Labour candidate has a majority of just 502 and where the Conservative candidate Dehenna Davison is a sound Brexiteer.

It is entirely right, though, that at this point The Brexit Party should talk a very aggressive game.

I’m still personally of the view that Boris’s administration will deliver a solid, no deal Brexit because, really, it has no other option if it wishes to survive.

But I like the idea of Nigel Farage and co playing the role of the party commissar in an NKVD punishment battalion, positioned just to the rear with a few machine guns trained ahead of them lest the Tories show any sign of wavering…

You Might Like
Learn more about RevenueStripe...