There have been a lot of understandable views expressed over the refusal to allow Nigel Farage MEP and leader of UKIP to lay a wreath at the Cenotaph tomorrow.
This has been described as “UKIP banned” by such as the Daily Express: http://www.express.co.uk/news/politics/617332/UKIP-cenotaph-Remembrance-Sunday-Nigel-Farage-wreath-row
British Gazette comment: The government’s decision is based on a seemingly unwritten agreement/understanding that political parties with fewer than SIX MPs should not be represented at the Cenotaph.
Thus not only is Nigel Farage MEP excluded, so is Leanne Wood AM the Leader of Plaid Cymru (with three MPs at Westminster) and Natalie Bennett, Leader of the Green Party of England and Wales (with one MP at Westminster).
The British Gazette would suggest a classic British compromise: That the present agreement remain but should be added to with a proviso that MP’s who have been elected representing a political party that is a UK wide (as UKIP) or a national (as Plaid Cymru) should be allowed to lay a wreath. In the case of where a party has a single MP (such as Douglas Carswell or Caroline Lucas) the MP would lay the wreath. In the cases such as Plaid Cymru – which has three MPs – the MPs should be allowed to agree amongst themselves who should lay the wreath and if they cannot agree, then no wreath should be laid by that party.
Were the government to adopt such a policy for 2016 – the eve of Remembrance Sunday is far too late to make a change – David Cameron would be fully aware that this would mean that Mr Douglas Carswell would be the man laying the wreath and not Mr Nigel Farage!
If anything is likely to change change the PM’s mind, it is this!