A Jewish MEP has quit Nigel Farage’s Brexit Party and urged voters to back the Conservatives at next week’s general election.
Lance Forman, 57, owner of a salmon smokehouse in East London, was among three Brexit Party MEPs to resign the whip and rally behind Boris Johnson’s party.
Forman, along with Lucy Harris, and Annunziata Rees-Mogg – sister to Commons leader Jacob – announced the move in a shared video message on Thursday.
MEP John Longworth, who was also featured in the video, was expelled this week for “repeatedly undermining” the Brexit Party’s election campaign.
The rebels said that backing Brexit Party candidates “risks splitting the Leave vote, allowing [Jeremy] Corbyn and a remain coalition to win by default and destroys our hopes for Brexit.”
“Despite the polls, the outcome of this election is unpredictable at constituency level. It is unlikely that the Brexit Party will win any seats,” they said.
“So we are recommending that all Brexit supporters now vote Conservative to support Boris Johnson’s deal, as every single Conservative Party Candidate has pledged.”
A spokesperson for the Brexit Party told PA news agency: “We also note that one of the MEPs is the sister of a cabinet minister, another has a partner who works in the office of the same cabinet minister and yet another is a personal friend of both Boris Johnson and Michael Gove.
“In the case of John Longworth, who was for years the firmest advocate of WTO withdrawal that we have ever met, he underwent a metamorphosis into being a supporter of the new EU treaty following two days of meetings in London. We hope that Mr Longworth is well rewarded for his actions.”