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Jeffrey Titford, Leader UK Independence Party
Jeffrey Titford, Leader UK Independence Party
BBC BREAKFAST WITH FROST INTERVIEW WITH JEFFREY TITFORD LEADER INDEPENDENCE PARTY APRIL 22ND, 2001

Please note "BBC Breakfast with Frost" must be credited if any part of this transcript is used

DAVID FROST:

And as politicians crank up the gears in the expectation of a upcoming election it's clear that Europe will be one of the main points of contention, Labour want to wait and see on a referendum that they have committed to it looking into it early in the next Parliament. The, the Tories want to keep the pound, William Hague is adamant that Britain should be in Europe but not Europe and going one step further the United Kingdom Independence Party wants, no messing about here, wants Britain to pull out of Europe altogether, is this a sustainable platform on which to run an election campaign. Well here to tell us more is the Party's Leader, Jeffrey Titford who also happens to be a member of the European Parliament and when people come to you and say this is crazy, Britain can't afford not to be part of this, what's the most important reply you think that you can make?

JEFFREY TITFORD:

Well most certainly I wouldn't agree with that, I believe there's a far greater opportunity for Great Britain outside of the European Union both in trade and in looking after our own affairs.

DAVID FROST:

Why greater, when the figures rise in how much of our trade comes from Europe, do you mean we would still keep all that trade?

JEFFREY TITFORD:

Oh most certainly keep all that trade and there was politicians, Robin Cook and one or two others who seemed to think that three million people would be unemployed but that was squashed just recently on a programme where Neil Kinnock no less actually said that it would have no effect on British trade with Europe if we withdrew from the European Union. If Kinnock says it it must be right.

DAVID FROST:

It must be right. But at the same time how do you fund your operation for this election, I'm thinking in the sense of do you have great business support or do you find that business people say no we've got to go into the single currency?

JEFFREY TITFORD:

No there are one or two people who give us reasonable amounts of money, up to probably 10,000 but mostly our party is run from the grassroots, the power is in the people and although this occasion we're going to have, well getting on for nearly 400 candidates already in place, nearly every one of them had paid their own 500 deposit, which is, you know, showing that they have conviction in what they're actually saying.

DAVID FROST:

And in terms of your candidates how many of them stood last time, or stood for the Referendum Party I suppose last time?

JEFFREY TITFORD:

Well yes of course the Referendum Party, I was one of them who stood for the Referendum Party, we had about 150 Referendum candidates move over to us. The Party itself in the 1970 [sic] 1997 election only put up about 150 candidates so this time we're twice as many already and it is growing by the day.

DAVID FROST:

And what's the target, what's your target Jeffrey?

JEFFREY TITFORD:

We'd like to think 400, we don't touch the Irish problem and therefore we don't fight in that area, Scotland and Wales perhaps need a little bit more of our encouragement so basically it is great it is England that provides most of those 400. We have got candidates in Scotland, we have got about 20 candidates in Wales.

DAVID FROST:

And where do you stand on this CRE you weren't there when the five leaders signed up but did you try and get there for it, would you like to sign that, would you sign the document?

JEFFREY TITFORD:

We weren't aware that a meeting was being called and most certainly I was not notified, I think what you've got to understand is that the CRE is a government quango and as such I don't go along a lot with arrangements there. But as far as my party is concerned the second paragraph of our manifesto states that we are non-racist, non-sectarian and we're open to any British person who wants to or understands what freedom, tolerance are all about.

DAVID FROST:

And what about the situation with the Tories, first of all against a, against a really strong anti-Europe Tory, Bill Cash say, will you stand against somebody like that or will you step aside in that circumstance and in general do you find the Conservative Party, William Hague which a lot of people find too anti-Europe, that you still find it mealy mouthed on Europe do you?

JEFFREY TITFORD:

Yes

DAVID FROST:

Two questions?

JEFFREY TITFORD:

Yes of the question of whether we stand against Eurosceptics, yes we certainly do stand against them, there are two reasons, one is that the number of them could be counted probably on this one hand, the other thing is of course it isn't the policy of the Conservative Party to withdraw from Europe and therefore they would not be able to influence Hague or whoever's in charge of that policy, so yes we must stand against them and we must give the people of this country an opportunity to express their own opinion in this way.

DAVID FROST:

Thank you very much indeed for being with us.

JEFFREY TITFORD:

It's been a pleasure.

DAVID FROST:

Many, many thanks Jeffrey.

END

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