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Pupils get to question UKIP chief
NIGEL Farage, the leader of the UK Independence Party, was challenged on issues including gay marriage during a visit to a county school.
The Euro MP was invited to Wheatley Park School on Friday following a request from economics A-Level students.
About 100 pupils and students filled the sixth form library to hear Mr Farage following previous talks from members of other parties.
The anti-European Union politician hit back at Prime Minister and Witney MP David Cameron’s recent comment that UKIP members were “pretty odd”.
The former city trader said: “Compared to Clegg, Cameron and Miliband I am pretty odd. Unlike them I have had a job for 20 years in the real world.”
He added: “I love Europe. It is the most fascinating continent on the planet.
“But this does not mean we should take all the countries in Europe and form them into one. That is the very opposite of freedom and democracy.”
Asked if he supported gay marriage, Mr Farage said he is “not vehemently against” it, but was surprised it has been given such attention by other parties.
Jackson Cole, 18, questioned Mr Farage’s view that “bully boys in Brussels” forced former Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi out of office.
The youngster suggested allegations about sex scandals “meant he had to go”.
Mr Farage joked: “That in Italy is not necessarily as bad as it is here.”
Economics student Beth Jeremy, 17, said afterwards: “I heard some interesting things but felt a lot of it was scaremongering, particularly when he warned about the EU being combined as one state.”
Mr Farage said: “They asked some excellent and challenging questions.”
In 2010’s General Election UKIP came fifth out of seven in Oxford East with 2.3 per cent of votes, fourth out of six in Oxford West and Abingdon with 2.7 per cent of votes, fifth out of 10 in Witney with 3.5 per cent of votes and fourth out of six in Banbury with five per cent of votes.