Nigel Farage rules out fresh bid to become MP at General Election

  • Video report by ITV News Political Correspondent Carl Dinnen

Nigel Farage will not be standing as a candidate at the General Election.

The Brexit Party leader said he believes he can better serve the cause by "traversing the length and breadth" of the UK campaigning, instead of fighting to get elected in one constituency.

He has previously lost on seven occasions when bidding to become an MP.

  • ITV News Political Correspondent Carl Dinnen believes Mr Farage's decision to not stand as an MP will hurt the Prime Minister as it will allow him to travel the country attacking Boris Johnson's Brexit deal

Asked if he was going to stand in the forthcoming election, Mr Farage told the Andrew Marr Show on BBC One: "I’ve thought very hard about this – how do I serve the cause of Brexit best, because that’s what I’m doing this for.

"Not for a career, I don’t want to be in politics for the rest of my life.

Former Tory minister Ann Widdecombe speaking during a Brexit Party event at the QEII Centre in London. Credit: PA

He continued: "Do I find a seat to try get myself into parliament or do I serve the cause better traversing the length and breadth of the United Kingdom supporting 600 candidates, and I’ve decided the latter course is the right one."

He added: "It’s very difficult to do both. It’s very difficult to be in a constituency every day and at the same time be out across the United Kingdom."

Speaking to the Sunday Times, Farage also said he has been twice offered a peerage, with the Brexit Party leader claiming it is one of a number of "baubles" put forward by the Conservative party.

When asked about the Brexit Party fielding candidates in around 600 seats, Mr Farage said: "I’ve wanted for months for there to be a Leave alliance. It seems obvious to me that no one party can own Brexit voters – there are Tory Brexit voters, there are Brexit Party Brexit voters and a lot of Labour Brexit voters."

"I always thought that to win an election, get a big majority so we can get a proper Brexit, a coming-together would be the objective," he added.

He went on to say that Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s current Brexit plan is not "genuine".

Treasury Minister Rishi Sunak hit back at Nigel Farage’s criticism of Boris Johnson’s Brexit deal Credit: Danny Lawson/PA

"If Boris is determined to stick to this new EU treaty, then that is not Brexit," he said.

"I promise you one thing: if Boris was going for a genuine Brexit, then we wouldn’t need to fight him in this election."

But Treasury Minister Rishi Sunak hit back at the criticism of the deal, telling the same programme: "I campaigned for Leave, I spent a lot of time talking to my constituents and others across the North East and in Yorkshire - what do they want from Brexit?

"They want to end free movement and replace it with a points system, they want to end the fact that money keeps going to the EU year after year, they want to make sure we’re in control of our laws, and also they want us to have an independent trade policy.

"These are all things the Prime Minister’s deal deliver.

"What I would say to Nigel Farage is, sometimes in politics, as in life, you’ve got to take yes for an answer."