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Nigel Farage decides he will NOT stand for South Thanet seat in general election

PUBLISHED: 08:28 21 April 2017 | UPDATED: 08:28 21 April 2017

Nigel Farage after his election defeat in South Thanet in May 2015. Pic: Ady Kerry

Nigel Farage after his election defeat in South Thanet in May 2015. Pic: Ady Kerry

Ady Kerry

The former Ukip leader claimed his position as an MEP gave him a better chance to influence Brexit

Nigel Farage has ruled out standing for parliament in the general election, claiming his position as an MEP gave him a better chance to influence Brexit.

The former Ukip leader said he would be able to use his profile in European politics to put “real pressure” on MEPs to back a “sensible deal” for the UK.

But he acknowledged that the thought of standing had been “tempting” after hinting many times in recent weeks he would want to contest the South Thanet seat he lost to Craig Mackinlay in 2015.

The prospect of Mr Farage returning and threatening Conservative voters in Thanet was laughed off earlier this week by current MPs Mr Mackinlay and Sir Roger Gale.

“If you think about it, he is a loser,” Sir Roger told us.

“He’s got what they call ‘previous’, he’s lost seven times and I can’t see the public voting for him.”

Mr Farage is understood to be visiting Ramsgate today, where he will talk to members ahead of the Kent County Council elections on May 4.

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