Reform UK gains 2,000 new members in 48 HOURS as 'Lee Anderson effect' takes hold

Reform UK gains 2,000 new members in 48 HOURS as 'Lee Anderson effect' takes hold

WATCH: Lee Anderson speaks to Christopher Hope

Millie Cooke

By Millie Cooke

Published: 12/03/2024

- 13:04

Updated: 13/03/2024

- 14:05

Lee Anderson crossed the floor to sit as a Reform UK MP yesterday afternoon

Additional reporting by Christopher Hope

Some 2,000 people have joined Reform UK in just 48 hours after Lee Anderson announced his decision to defect, the party has claimed.

Membership of Reform UK costs £25 per year, meaning the party has been handed around £50,000 in two days.

Party leader Richard Tice told GB News: "The good news on membership continues with 2,000 joining in the 48 hours since our press conference. Our email server has almost melted with messages of support and enthusiasm".

He claimed that people have donated more than the £25 required for membership, saying the average donation amounted to around £30.

Lee Anderson Richard Tice

Lee Anderson is expected to cross the floor and sit as a Reform UK MP just after 1pm today


Speaking yesterday, Tice said the "record numbers" are "proof just how popular Lee Anderson is with many Red Wall voters" and "why he will be such a powerful Red Wall champion for us".

Lee Anderson crossed the floor to sit as a Reform UK MP yesterday afternoon.

The former Conservative MP announced his defection to the party on Monday, saying he is "prepared to gamble" on himself. Speaking at a press conference, the MP for Ashfield said he knows "how many people support Reform and what they have to say".

He added: "All I want is my country back."

Anderson has ruled out holding a by-election in his constituency ahead of this year's general election.

His defection came weeks after he was suspended from the Tory party after claiming that "Islamists have got control of our country" and that Sadiq Khan has "given our capital city away to his mates."

Announcing Anderson's decision to join Reform UK, the party's leader Richard Tice said it had found a "champion" for its plan to overtake the Tories in Red Wall seats.

He described the MP as a "person of great integrity", adding: "I think millions of British people endorsed the concerns and sentiments of what Lee was saying, which is that we are sick and tired of our streets being taken over by these pro-Hamas, extremist, antisemitic people and Islamist extremists."

Anderson accused the Tory Party of "giving our country away".

He said: "My opinions are not controversial. They are opinions which are shared by millions of people up and down the country.

“Now, like millions of people in this country, I feel that we are slowly giving our country away. We are giving away our way of life. We are allowing people to erase our history.


"We are giving up our streets to a minority of people who literally hate our way of life. We are letting people into our country that will never integrate or adopt our British values.”

Home Secretary James Cleverly expressed disappointment at the MP for Ashfield's decision to defect, saying: “I think he’s made a real mistake."

He added: "As he has said, in his own words, Reform is not the answer, and a vote for Reform will only let in a Labour government.”

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