Saturday, 27 April 2013

How far right must you go to be rejected by UKIP?

It comes as no surprise to discover that several UKIP candidates in the local elections hold some rather unpleasant opinions.

According to today’s Daily Telegraph, some of them have such extreme views that even UKIP has baulked. Scrutinising various candidates’ statements, however, it is hard to tell where UKIP draws the line.

The following views appear to be acceptable for a UKIP candidate to hold:
  • Mick Philpott, who killed six of his children in a house fire, should have faced “chemical castration” to stop him claiming benefits for more than two children. Philpott should be “hung or burned at the stake”.
  • Objecting to police charges against “three blokes [who] kill a pedo”, adding “if they can’t do it we will”.
  • Endorsing the far-Right English Defence League.
  • ‘Liking’ Facebook groups with names such as “No more mosques in Britain”, “Women deserve as much respect as men … LOL joke” and “Racism? No mate it’s just ethnic banter”.
  • Referring to a risk of tuberculosis after barriers to Bulgarian and Romanian immigrants are lifted next year: “I would suggest not going to London after January 2014 unless you absolutely have to and if you do, adopt the Japanese practice of wearing a face mask.”
These views, on the other hand, are sufficiently unacceptable to UKIP that you will be withdrawn as a candidate:
  • Blaming Jewish people for the Holocaust.
  • Being a former member of the British National Party.
Of course, it is perfectly possible that there is no morally consistent dividing line because UKIP is an incoherent shambles. If there is a clear threshold, it is probably not a moral one but a cynical calculation about what you can get away with.

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