Ukip councillor Roger Lord quits party in anger at being 'trampled on' to make way for Douglas Carswell
Mr Lord wanted to be the Ukip candidate for the upcoming Clacton by-election but was "sidelined" for Douglas Carswell, a Tory defector
A Ukip councillor has quit the party complaining that he has been sidelined and “trampled on” after being effectively relegated in his bid for the Clacton by-election to make way for a Tory defector.
Farmer Roger Lord, 57, was ousted by Douglas Carswell, who had left the Conservative party and his position as Clacton MP to be chosen as the primary Ukip candidate in the triggered by-election.
Mr Lord, who previously expressed annoyance that he had already formed a campaign team and would continue on in his bid, has now also stepped down from his role as County Councillor for Brightlingsea.
Last month, Mr Lord said the announcement that Mr Carswell would run under Ukip was a “complete surprise” to him and that the former Tory should have been more ‘courteous’ in ringing him up to alert him before the news broke.
He had also said that he would push on with the fight and ‘rip the throat out’ of the establishment.
He has since changed his mind, however, and has warned the Euroceptic party that it risks alienating its long-standing members.
Mr Lord, who has reportedly known Nigel Farage since 1997, said: “There are loads of good people within Ukip who have worked hard for a long time and deserve to be shown a degree of respect.
“If the leadership continues to demean those people and sweep candidates aside, it could backfire.
“I may well be just the first of many to be trampled on in this way. Voters certainly won't be impressed by people being moved around like chess pieces.”
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A Ukip spokesperson had previously said that more Tory MPs would defect like Mr Carswell and that the party was in discussions with five to 10 Labour MPs about them doing similar.
“Only about a quarter of our members are former Tories and certainly in Clacton I have recruited many liberals,” Mr Lord said.
“Those people would be extremely reluctant to vote for somebody with such right wing views.
“There is no guarantee that voters will follow Mr Carswell to Ukip - he may find that they kick back against that assumption.”
Another Ukip spokesperson had said that Mr Lord was not the Ukip candidate for the by-election.
The by-election is scheduled to take place on 9 October, with a landslide win for Ukip considered likely following two polls putting them 44 points and 32 points in the lead ahead of the Tories.
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