Election POLL: Ben Habib thinks Brexit Party will have 20 MPs – do you agree? VOTE HERE

The MEP said that “with the benefit of hindsight” his party maybe should not have pulled 317 candidates from the General Election. Leader Nigel Farage initially suggested that his party would target every seat in the UK. But he faced pressure in the run-up to the close of nominations on Thursday to stand down Brexit Party candidates in all but a few constituencies to avoid splitting the pro-Leave vote. Mr Farage had already said they would not contest the 317 seats which the Conservatives had won in the 2017 election.

Ben Habib said: “I would be surprised if we don’t get at least five MPs and I would be very pleased if we get 20. There is a good chance.”

It was then expected that there would be around 300 candidates running for Mr Farage’s party.

But Mr Habib has suggested that his party may have made the wrong decision in standing down so many candidates.

He told Sophy Ridge on Sky News: “Well I think with the benefit of hindsight maybe we shouldn’t have stood 317 candidates down, with the benefit of hindsight, because the Tories haven’t responded positively to it.

“They haven’t stood down and assured a proper Leave mandate in Parliament.”

Mr Habib added he is “torn” over how to vote in his own constituency of Chelsea and Fulham where there is no Brexit Party candidate.

But he said he “may” vote for Tory Greg Hands or alternatively spoil his ballot paper.

Meanwhile, the MEP said he thinks staying in the European Union would be better than going ahead with Boris Johnson’s Withdrawal Agreement.

He said he sees the Prime Minister’s deal as “much worse” than remaining in the EU and that Mr Johnson needs to be steered away from his plan.

READ MORE: Brexit Party MEP gives key reason why Boris Johnson’s deal ‘is worse'

Mr Habib was asked about allegations that Tories have offered jobs and peerages to the Brexit Party in return for them standing down at the election.

Asked if the claims are correct, Mr Habib laughed as he said: “Sadly, no job was ever offered to me.”

He added: “I am aware that a number of my colleagues have been pressed. Ann Widdecombe, for example, was offered some sort of negotiating position with the Tory Party, from Number 10, someone from Number 10 called Ann.

“I know there have been lots of conversations going on, and discussions, and pressure has been brought to bear.”

He said he was unable to say how many people had been pressured.

He was also asked about the Conservative Party’s denials and whether his comments amount to him saying the Tories are lying when they deny the claims.

Mr Habib responded: “I’m saying they’re being economical with the truth for sure.

“Absolutely. It has been going on. Without a shadow of a doubt.”

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