This crisis of powerlessness for the Coalition is an opportunity for Ukip and we expect to gain electoral strength as people turn against unrestricted mass immigration and membership of the EU, writes UKIP Leader Nigel Farage.
•Happy New Year to Daily Telegraph readers. I am sure 2014 will be a pivotal year in British politics, and I suggest this for a number of reasons.
From today 29 million people from Bulgaria and Romania have untrammelled access to Britain and our labour market. We shall learn very soon that our EU membership and adherence to EU free movement means free housing, free healthcare and free access to the British benefits system for every EU citizen who wishes to come here. At a time when school places are at a premium, when one million young people are unemployed and our transport system is overstretched to breaking point, this is a situation of utmost folly.
A recent EU Commission-sponsored report has informed us that there are already 600 thousand economically inactive EU citizens resident in the UK. We do not know in advance how many Romanian and Bulgarian people shall come here, but past experience and huge British draw factors combined with Balkan push factors point to hundreds of thousands of economic migrants coming here in the next five years.
By allowing this monumental change to take place, Mr Cameron is laying asphalt on the road to lower wages, poverty and unemployment for many British people. This is utterly intolerable.
Over the next year, we shall be confronted with the full consequences of the loss of control of our borders, loss of our sovereignty and the impotence of our parliamentary democracy. I expect ministers of the Tory Government will beat their chests, and make noises about their plans to make minor changes to the benefit system, but this shall all be to no avail.
This crisis of powerlessness for the Coalition is an opportunity for Ukip and we expect to gain electoral strength as people turn against unrestricted mass immigration and membership of the EU.
In May of this year, I shall do everything possible to turn the election for the European Parliament into a quasi-referendum on EU membership and expect an electorate frustrated with the present and hopeful of future change to come out in great numbers to vote for Ukip.
It does not matter which parties people voted for in the past, going forward I expect to pick up a lot of support from across the political spectrum, and we have every opportunity to top the poll in the European elections.
When this happens, we will see a huge shake-up in the three pro-EU parties, with a change in policy and personnel.
I shall continue to push for an EU exit, and far from the scare stories put about by the Three Old Parties that the UK will become isolated, if we leave the EU we'll be free; free from EU legislation, from EU taxes, and Euro induced recessions,
In the next year, the UK can become a beacon of light and democracy in a Europe that is falling into democratic darkness and economic recession. The EU on the other hand continues to follow Churchill's description of success as going 'from failure to failure without any loss of enthusiasm'.
A fine example of this is that Latvia is today joining the Euro currency against the wishes of 60 per cent of its people. As you read this, people are burning EU flags in Riga although incredibly we read nothing about it in the British media.
The political elite of Latvia wants to join the Euro, the people do not and in great EU style, the people are not asked their opinion or for their approval.
How lucky were we to escape from joining the Euro currency, as EU fanatics in the UK were fighting with all their might and furious determination for a centralised EU with a common currency, government, foreign policy and even defence policy. All utter madness of course.
Another aspect of the coming year I foresee is the confrontation between the sovereignty of the British court system and sovereignty of the House of Parliament with the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg. It could be on the ECHR's demand to give prisoners the vote or again, it could be on its insistence on giving freedom or asylum to some convicted murderer, rapist or terrorist. The moment of denouement is sure to come. Our adherence to the judgements of the ECHR is another requirement linked to our EU membership. UKIP shall be bringing this to the fore and arguing for our freedom from its harmful embrace.
I have a dream that one day our children will live free in an independent, democratic nation called the United Kingdom.
Dear readers, we have nothing to lose but our EU shackles and we have our sovereignty to win. Join me this year in the fight for our freedom.