|This is what 200 former Tory MPs might look like with me!|
Two-thirds is a lot of MPs. Currently that would represent about 200 Conservative MPs. To a greater or lesser degree these MPs what out of the EU or some kind of wholesale renegotiation of politically and economically crippling treaties. But they're not going to get either or anything vaguely eurosceptic from David Cameron and Nick Clegg. The EU gravy train carries on rather like a demented Hornby train racing round a circular track. So these MPs mutter and gossip and entertain Edward Stourton with their gripes and grouses. Are they going to do anything about them?
One thing they could do is jump ship and join UKIP en masse. Overnight UKIP would be the second largest party in the House of Commons. It may not be electorally democratic but it is perfectly constitutionally democratic. With 200 UKIP MPs the political dynamic changes in a flash. The Coalition unravels. Cameron sits and blinks and wonders if he wants to be in Nick Clegg's shoes as second fiddle in a rehashed coalition. Maybe he doesn't get the chance. Perhaps Nigel Farage, orchestrating events from College Green, does a deal with eurosceptic Labour MPs? Or there's a general election and a scramble for votes.
If large numbers of Tory MPs became UKIP candidates, the voters in those constituencies would have to consider whether to re-elect then under their new colours or to reject them. But with a simple majority voting system any candidate in first place securing a third or more of the votes would be elected. It would be a very interesting election.
However, I believe I will find fairies at the bottom of my garden before I hear that Nigel Farage is warmly greeting 200 former Tory MPs into his UKIP fold. They will continue to grumble and make erudite noises as and when because they believe their constituents want to hear such noises. That's where they are putting themselves between a rock and a hard place. The electorate will soon realise that their mutterings amount to the sirens of political eunuchs. Why not go for the real thing with UKIP, the voters will think. The Coalition government is not shifting on Europe. At Euro elections UKIP goes from strength to strength. Could it be so at Westminster too?