LONDON — UKIP's only MP Douglas Carswell has said it is only fair that Nigel Farage is honoured by the Queen for successfully campaigning for Britain to leave the European Union.
Speaking on ITV politics show "Peston on Sunday," Carswell said: "It would be churlish for Nigel not to get an honour that recognises his contribution."
Carswell made the comment amid claims that he attempted to block manoeuvres to get Farage a knighthood in December. Farage said the MP responded negatively to the plan because he was "consumed with jealousy and a desire to hurt both UKIP and me."
But Carswell told "Peston on Sunday" that he was asked to lobby after decisions had been made about the Queen's New Year's honours. "I was asked to close the stable door after the horse had bolted," he said. "I didn’t want to block it."
UKIP's biggest donor Aaron Banks remains furious with Carswell and promised to stand against him in his Clacton seat at the next general election. Banks claimed that Carswell gave sensitive data to the Tory party last year to undermine Farage's campaign to be elected as an MP for South Thanet.
Carswell said the allegation was "utter nonsense." He also denied reports that he is planning to return to the Conservative Party. "I’m not rejoining the Conservatives," Carswell said.
At the ❤️ of the feud with Douglas is he downloaded Thanet south 6 times & gave it to the Tories to push poll. The only data he downloaded https://t.co/PBJ2IjrD1c Tweet Embed:
Also worth noting it's the only seat where he downloaded data , this ended up with the Tories .
I will stand against him in Clacton ..... https://t.co/WQi111JPXJ
Earlier on Sunday, UKIP leader Paul Nuttall told "The Andrew Marr Show" that if it is proven that Carswell lobbied for Farage then "I don’t see a problem." Carswell also backed Nuttall after he lost out on a seat in the House of Commons in the bruising Stoke-on-Trent Central by-election last month.
"I think Paul is great — I’m 100% behind him," the UKIP MP said.
Nuttall blamed a "smear campaign" for his defeat in the by-election. His campaign was dogged by media reports that he lied about losing close friends in the Hillsborough disaster. Nuttall pleaded with UKIP voters to give him time, adding: "UKIP has got to hold its nerve."
Nuttall also supported calls for Farage to be knighted, calling him the "most influential politician of the 21st century" in an interview with "Sophy Ridge On Sunday" on Sky News.
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