Al Murray: The Pub Landlord on Muslim 'ghettos', breastfeeding – and overseeing the acquisition of Greece by Kent County Council

An exclusive interview with Nigel Farage’s most serious political challenger

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The Independent Online

The political world stood agog this week as Nigel Farage welcomed some “serious competition” for the South Thanet seat in the May general election.

Step up the Pub Landlord, who announced he would be spearheading the opposition to the Ukip leader's campaign under the banner of the newly formed Free United Kingdom Party (FUKP) “because it’s time for a bloke waving a pint offering common sense solutions”.

So far, his proposed solutions include curbing immigration by entirely bricking up the Channel Tunnel “with British bricks”, making Alex Salmond the First Minister of Norwich “so he can get to understand what being ignored by the rest of the country is really like” and elevating South Thanet’s status to the country’s new capital, with a demilitarized zone separating it from North Thanet.

Here, we put his promises to the test.

Independent: What do you think about claims some of your policies on immigration might be racist?

The Pub Landlord: “Is it really racist to say: ‘Argh god no, no we don’t want any of you or your lot coming over here to live here Christ no thanks argh Jesus? Stay away stay away’? Actually when you put it like that it might be racist. Er. My press bloke is telling me to move on. But the last thing we need is people coming over and making us look work-shy. Next question!.”

Has mass immigration really led to Muslim 'ghettos' in Britain, “like Birmingham”?

“It seems there’s been some kind of terrible misunderstanding about Birmingham. It’s not a new thing, no one’s ever wanted to go there.” 

On Europe, you’ve pledged to buy Greece and have it operated by Kent County Council. How do you intend to honour your promise?

“I envisage Greece exiting the Euro and needing someone to help. Kent County Council would only have to shift bin collection to fortnightly to be able to step in and take on Greece’s debts.  In turn Manston airport – which is in my intended constituency by the way, keeping it local, yes – would be reopened as the only airport for flying to Greece. Joined up thinking for once. Admit it, you like it don’t you?”

What are your views on gay marriage?

“I don’t want to marry a man, let me just make that clear. Well, it’s not something that worries me to be honest. It might have passed into law but I can’t see it happening, after all, no man I’ve ever met wanted to get married if he could possibly help it, so the chances of there being two out there is unlikely, the chances of them meeting impossible. But just to make it clear, I do not want to marry a man.”

Labour have faced some criticism from the Conservatives that their proposed plans involve £21bn in extra spending during the first year of a new parliament alone. What steps have you taken to ensure yours have been costed effectively?

“Er, much the same as them, I held a calculator upside and wrote BOOBIES on it and them multiplied it by George Osborne’s mum’s birthday. But what I will do is follow Labour’s lead and plant some money trees up north.” 

Breastfeeding women: Should they “sit in a corner” and “remain discreet”?

“Yes, that should be the bare minimum.  Ha ha ha that’s a joke you see, at least one that a politician might make. But seriously, I think women bottle feeding should cover up too. It could upset people who don’t like bottles.” 

Do you expect to be included in the leaders’ debates, alongside David Cameron?

“It’s simple really: why not? None of these chancers has had a game show on Dave, they won’t even know which camera to look at.”

Nigel Farage has welcomed the Pub Landlord's announcement as the arrival of 'serious competition'


Nigel Farage welcomed your challenge as “serious competition”. How do you view Russell Brand’s no-vote challenge for a representative democracy?

“What you have to admire about Russell is he what he might lack in serious argument he makes up for with adjectives. But not voting when there’s an election on is like watching a porno when you could be having sex. You’d think Russ would know that. But what I do admire about Russell is he would never just parachute himself into a constituency, he’d come by helicopter.” 

Tony Blair “literally” doesn’t know what Russell Brand’s Revolution means. Do you?

“Look. I know what you’re asking there. And I know why you’re asking it. But. Look. What I say to you, friends, and I’m not saying it because it’s what you want to hear, but because it is the right thing to say and the right time to say it is: I actually don’t know what Tony Blair means.”

Your critics say that a vote for you could divide the anti-Farage electorate and encourage political apathy. How do you respond?

“Not for one second do I think the British electorate are fools. Make that mistake at your peril! If what you want is FUKP, vote FUKP.  Thanks for talking to me.”