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The Tory Party is in panic mode after a spate of devastating polls were released over the weekend and as Nigel Farage’s new Brexit Party continued to make waves with a pair of high profile events on Friday and Saturday.

Former leader Iain Duncan Smith – long considered one of the more hardline Eurosceptics until he caved in and voted for Theresa May’s EU treaty on the third go – spoke for many of his colleagues on the Sophy Ridge program: “On the 29th when we didn’t leave it all went wrong. May said she would leave on the 29th & as soon as she didn’t the poll ratings crashed.”

He went on to plead to the prime minister to get Britain out of the European Union in the coming weeks to avoid fighting the European elections on May 23. Boris Johnson has already ruled out campaigning in European elections.

It’s no surprise that top Tories are terrified of the prospects of European elections, with two new polls showing big results for both the Brexit Party and UKIP. YouGov showed the two parties polling at a combined 29% under proportional representation, ahead of UKIP’s groundbreaking 2014 result under Nigel Farage. Opinium showed them at 25%, clearly ahead of the Tories.

General election polling wasn’t much better, with the Tories dipping below 30% for the first time in six years with YouGov and UKIP soaring back into the double-digits with Opinium. And (here’s the kicker) these polls were taken before the Brexit Party even officially launched on Friday…

It was quite an event in Coventry, with Nigel Farage declaring himself a candidate and unveiling five others – most notably Jacob Rees-Mogg’s sister Annunziata who, unlike her brother, has put her country ahead of her political career by quitting May’s Tories and standing up against her rotten deal.

They followed it up with a public meeting in Birmingham, with Farage giving a barnstorming speech to the packed auditorium: “I’m damned if after 25 years fighting for this, I’m going to roll over and allow these politicians to do this to us!” Some Tory Eurosceptics could take a lesson or two…