Stewart Jackson, Conservative MP for Peterborough has released the following statement.
I was recently invited to a ‘public meeting’ in South Bretton, Peterborough, in my constituency, organised by the United Kingdom Independence Party. On the basis that it was open to non-party members of the general public, I agreed to attend. It is not uncommon for politicians of one party to address meetings organised by another political party, and agreeing to do so does not signify support for the organising party.
In good faith, I outlined my views and agreed to take questions. UKIP repaid this openness by secretly recording my remarks, releasing them to the media without my permission. It appears this was to seek to make as much mischief as possible.
I have no intention of defecting to UKIP, a party which has only one policy, and no chance of implementing it. I have long argued members of UKIP, who have their political roots on both the left and right of politics, should work within the Labour and Conservative parties to offer the British people a long overdue referendum on membership of the EU.
Let me be clear: A vote for UKIP is a wasted vote.
I might happen to agree with its sole policy, but I am a Conservative and have no intention of joining UKIP.
I am therefore fighting to get my party to adopt the position which is supported by a clear majority of people in this country and Peterborough – an In/Out Referendum and our withdrawal from the EU.
I therefore urge UKIP members wanting an MP able to campaign for this from within Parliament, to not waste their vote, but to support those, like me, who have a realistic chance of getting elected on this policy and who has already personally sacrificed political office, in order to campaign for what I believe is right and best for my constituents and country
My message is this – I am a very euro-sceptic Conservative. I am not joining UKIP, but UKIP members should join with me, and help me campaign for a free and independent United Kingdom.
Stewart’s record on Europe