Farage: Boris is a busted flush and politics will break up in next five years

Nigel Farage has called former prime minister Boris Johnson a “busted flush, a hypocrite and a liar” as he denied that a potential return from his fellow brexiteer to politics would affect his growing support.

The Reform UK leader also said that British politics will “break up” in the next five years due to pressure for electoral changes.

The former PM made a surprise appearance at a Tory rally on Tuesday night in an effort to give the Conservative campaign a late boost.

Mr Johnson and Mr Farage fought for Brexit together, but they went on to clash in later years due to their disagreement over the delivery of leaving the EU.

The Reform UK leader spoke to reporters when he appeared alongside boxer Derek Chisora at a campaign event in Clacton, Essex.

Mr Farage said the former prime minister’s return to the Conservative campaign was “irrelevant. Absolutely irrelevant”.

He said: “He’s a busted flush. He’s the reason they’re in so much trouble.”

General Election campaign 2024
Reform UK leader Nigel Farage and boxer Derek Chisora at a boxing gym in Clacton (Ian West/PA)

Asked whether a more permanent return to politics from Mr Johnson could affect Reform UK’s performance, Mr Farage said: “He might have charisma but he’s a compulsive liar, I’m not. You might not like what I say but I’m pretty consistent. He isn’t.”

Mr Farage had earlier said: “Look, I don’t think Boris brings any value to the Conservative campaign at all – they delude themselves. The reason they’re in this trouble is he’s the one that squandered the 80-seat majority.”

He added: “Rishi Sunak says vote for the others and they’re even worse than us. Keir Starmer says vote for change without telling us what the change would be.

“And we’re saying the country needs to take a very different direction, and actually I think our message and our contract is more optimistic than the other two put together.”

With his party predicted to win just three seats in YouGov’s final MRP poll, Mr Farage said “British politics will break up in the next five years”, as he denied that parties can only win from the centre.

Mr Farage said: “I mean there was effectively a coalition on the centre-right at the last general election because I stood down and all those votes on the back of Brexit et cetera went to Boris.

“And you know, go back eight years, there was a vote for Brexit against the establishment telling us not to, so no, this idea you can win from the centre, well, Starmer’s pitching for the centre, Rishi’s pitching for the centre and I think British politics will break up in the next five years.

“I think there’ll be a different electoral system and you won’t even recognise it a few years down the road.”

General Election campaign 2024
Reform UK leader Nigel Farage (Ian West/PA)

Mr Farage also expressed “regret” at Reform UK “letting some bad people” stand as candidates at the General Election.

Georgie David, the party’s candidate for West Ham and Beckton, was the second to say she is quitting Reform for the Conservatives – citing the “bigoted” views of the “vast majority” of her fellow parliamentary hopefuls.

Reform has also had to remove support from a number of candidates due to racist, xenophobic, or homophobic comments.

Asked if he could promise by 2029 he would not have similar issues with candidates, Mr Farage spoke of the record of the Brexit Party under his tenure in the European Parliament and claimed there was “never a single accusation of homophobia, of anything all the while the Brexit Party was running”.

He said: “I didn’t quite realise what the extent of the problem was a month ago, but I’ll sort it out.

“I sorted it out in Ukip, I had no problems with it in the Brexit Party and from Friday my first two big jobs are number one to professionalise the party and number two to democratise it.”

Party chairman Richard Tice accused the Tories of planting fake candidates to deliberately discredit Reform.

Mr Farage said he had “evidence” that Reform candidates were “being written to by Conservative candidates being made lots and lots of promises, like safe seats on the council that might lead to cabinet positions, etc. So a lot of that’s been going on”.

Asked if he would stay on as Reform UK leader if he loses in Clacton, Mr Farage said: “If I lose the seat in Clacton I shall go out for a few pints and think about it, but of course I will stay.”

Mr Farage also defended his decision to appear alongside Chisora, who sported a pair of Reform boxing gloves, a gown emblazoned with “Nigel’s security” and a Union flag bandana.

Asked about Chisora’s conviction for assaulting a woman in 2010 and whether the boxer is a good role model for young men, the Reform UK leader said: “You know what? You show me someone who’s lived a perfect life and never been in trouble.

“With these young kids here, he’s a fantastic role model.”

General Election campaign 2024
Reform UK leader Nigel Farage and boxer Derek Chisora (Ian West/PA)

Asked why he was out supporting Mr Farage, boxer Chisora said: “God Save the King”, adding that he and Mr Farage were “good buddies” and the Reform leader “is going to win” the seat in Clacton.

Referring to I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here, he said: “(Nigel Farage) was amazing in the jungle, did you see the jungle?”