Nigel Farage: I won't 'spend much time' on Donald Trump campaign trail in America if I'm an MP

Nigel Farage: I won't 'spend much time' on Donald Trump campaign trail in America if I'm an MP

Nigel Farage told on Tuesday that he would not “spend much time” on the Donald Trump campaign trail in America if he is elected to Parliament.

The new Reform UK leader is standing to be an MP in the Essex seat of Clacton.

Just over a week ago, he was making clear that his focus would be on the US presidential elections in the autumn.

But in a dramatic U-turn, he announced on Monday that he was becoming Reform leader and seeking to be an MP, having failed repeatedly in the past to get into Parliament.

He immediately went to war with the Tories on immigration and Europe.

Asked on BBC radio if elected to Parliament whether he would be on the other side of the Atlantic campaigning with Trump in the autumn, Mr Farage said: “I clearly could not spend much time in America if I was in Westminster.

“Doesn’t mean I could not go at all but certainly it would be a change of priorities.”

This contrasted with what he was saying on May 23 when he ruled out standing as a Reform UK candidate in the upcoming general election.

Mr Farage, then the party’s honorary president, said he had “thought long and hard” about whether to stand in the poll on July 4 and it was “not the right time”.

He added: “I will do my bit to help in the campaign, but it is not the right time for me to go any further than that. Important though the general election is, the contest in the United States of America on November 5 has huge global significance.

“A strong America as a close ally is vital for our peace and security. I intend to help with the grassroots campaign in the USA in any way that I can.”

Reform is seeking to attract disillusioned Conservative voters and has been strongly campaigning on issues of immigration and net zero in previous Labour stronghold seats in the North, known as the Red Wall.

Meanwhile, Trump’s name will appear on the ballot Tuesday for the first time since his historic conviction on felony crimes as a handful of states hold the last Republican presidential primary contests of 2024.

The former president will be on the ballot in Republican contests in Montana, New Jersey and New Mexico.

President Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic nominee, will compete in primaries in the same states, plus the primary in Washington, D.C., and one in South Dakota.

Republicans in D.C. held a party-run primary in March. South Dakota cancelled its Republican presidential primary because Trump was uncontested.

Voters will also cast ballots in primary races for federal, state and local offices in those states.

Trump and Mr Biden are both expected to easily prevail in the contests, where they’re the last major candidates still running.

But the results could signal voter concerns about their choices as November’s election barrels closer.

If Trump’s margins of victory are closer than expected, it could be a sign that voters have hesitations about nominating a presidential candidate with a felony criminal record.

Trump was convicted last week by a Manhattan jury on 34 felony counts related to hush money payments.

Jurors found the former president guilty of falsifying business records to conceal hush money payments made to former porn star Stormy Daniels during the 2016 presidential election campaign.