The Brexit Party’s Scottish MEP has stood down as a general election candidate in protest at Nigel Farage’s decision not to contest any Conservative-held seats.
In a major u-turn, Mr Farage announced on Monday that his party would not fight 317 constituencies where the Tories won in 2017 to help Boris Johnson to victory and deliver Brexit.
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The Brexit Party leader said he still intended to stand candidates in Labour-Tory marginals, potentially making Conservative gains more difficult, but Mr Farage is understood to have come under further pressure from donors and Brexit supporters to extend the party’s retreat.
Louis Stedman-Bryce, the only elected Brexit Party representative in Scotland, posted on twitter that he “cannot support” the decision, and would not stand in Glasgow North East, where he would have challenged Labour MP Paul Sweeney.
In a series of posts on twitter, Mr Stedman-Bryce wrote: “I joined the Brexit Party to change politics for good and uphold democracy and I do not trust Boris Johnson to deliver the type of Brexit I voted for.
“I believe that the deal he has proposed would be devastating to our country and our future prosperity.
“So it is with a heavy heart that I have taken the decision not to run in the upcoming general election.
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“Whilst I supported a localised agreement with the Tories in Scotland to help prevent the onslaught of the SNP, I cannot support standing down PPC's [prospective parliamentary candidates] across all Tory seats.”
Mr Farage defended his decision by claiming it would make it more difficult for the Liberal Democrats to gain at the Tories' expense, reducing the likelihood of a second EU referendum less likely. He described it as a "unilateral Leave alliance", after Mr Johnson repeatedly rejected calls for a formal pact between the two parties.