Behind the Controversy: Why Did Reform UK Candidate Resign So Close to Election?

Grant St Clair-Armstrong, a Reform UK candidate, has resigned after the discovery of past blog posts endorsing the BNP and making racist and sexist remarks, though his name remains on the ballot. Here’s the full story.

Reform Attacking Conservative Flank

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Reform UK has decimated the traditional Conservative party by unashamedly setting its sights on the party’s far-right, anti-immigrant flank.

Limited Election Prospects

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Despite being highly unlikely that Reform UK will gain more than a few seats in the upcoming general election, party leader Nigel Farage has proclaimed that the party, who overtook the Conservatives in a recent poll for The Times, are the “real opposition.”

Mixed Fortunes

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However, despite Reform UK enjoying a sudden and unexpected reversal of fortunes since the return of Farage, not all the news has been good for the business-disguised-as-a-party.

Candidate Controversy

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One of their candidates, Grant StClair-Armstrong, who was standing in North West Essex for Reform UK, has either been fired or resigned, depending on who you believe, following an investigation by The Times, which revealed he had previously written blog posts in which he endorsed the fascist British National Party, used racial slurs about Chinese and Pakistani people and made sexist jokes about “female hormones.”

Enoch Powell Reference

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StClair-Armstrong wrote, “I could weep now, every time I pick up a British newspaper and read the latest about the state of the UK. No doubt, Enoch Powell would be doing the same if he was alive. My solution … vote BNP!”

Old Blog Posts

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The posts, made initially between 2004 and 2010, were discovered from an archived version of his blog, Joli Triste, which had since been deleted.

Regret Expressed

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When the bombshell report was published by The Times, StClair-Armstrong expressed his regret, telling the BBC, “I have never supported the BNP. I think they are a disgusting organisation.”

Misguided Frustration

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He wrote on X, formerly Twitter, shortly after the news was revealed, “I do not and have never supported the BNP, particularly the nasty Nick Griffin. I posted it in a moment of frustration, the only person in the world who has ever done so.”

Political Damage Done

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Despite his insistence that he regrets his actions, his appeal for understanding to the public, and the deletion of his past blog posts, the damage to StClair-Armstrong’s political standing was already done.

Swift Distancing

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Reform UK swiftly distanced itself from StClair Armstrong following the disturbing revelations.

Party Statement

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A party spokesperson stated, “Mr St Clair-Armstrong has tendered his resignation as a member of Reform UK due to the revelation of unacceptable historic social media comments and we have accepted his resignation.”

Resignation Unclear

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However, it was unclear whether StClair-Armstrong had jumped or had been pushed, as he told the BBC, “To be honest, I wouldn’t have stepped down. I would have let the people decide.”

Still on Ballot

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Despite his apparent resignation, StClair-Armstrong’s name will still appear as the Reform UK candidate on the ballot.

Election Implications

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The timing of the resignation came after the deadline for changes to nominations, meaning that if elected, he would serve as an independent.

Doubtful Election Chances

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However, he is standing in the seat held by Kemi Badenoch, the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, a Conservative heavyweight, so it is doubtful he will be elected.

Difficult Period Defense

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In an attempt to defend himself, StClair-Armstrong made clear that his comments were made during a difficult period in his life and that he had since tried to rectify his online presence.

Bitter Regret

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He told the BBC on Sunday, “I bitterly regret all of those comments made many years ago and I am just sorry that some people deemed it necessary to hunt for them when I am not the person I was then.”

Far-Right Sympathies

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Despite his past personal and political frustrations, the content of his posts, which supported far-right ideologies and called for the death of his political enemies, were beyond the pale for even Reform UK.

Extreme Suggestions

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Speaking of Tony Blair and his spin doctor Alastair Campbell during the Iraq War Chilcott inquiry, StClair-Armstrong wrote, “The simple solution is to extradite Blair … [and] the odious Alistair Campbell to a country that routinely indulges in torture and execution.”

Scrutiny and Accountability

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The media coverage of StClair-Armstrong’s resignation highlights the increasing scrutiny and accountability placed upon insurgent parties like Reform UK.

Infiltration by Extremists

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Despite its claims to be the rebellious new force on the right of UK politics, this incident shows how new parties can be infiltrated by actors with questionable motives and political beliefs.

Questionable Assessments

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Perhaps more surprising is how StClair-Armstrong could blend in seamlessly with the other candidates put forward by Reform UK ahead of the election, passing whatever candidate assessment the party had in place.

Far-Right Rejection

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Grant StClair-Armstrong’s resignation from Reform UK following the discovery of his past controversial comments shows how, even in the uncertain world of modern UK politics, far-right sympathies are still, thankfully, not acceptable to the vast majority of the British public.

Future Uncertain

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Whether there are other skeletons in Reform UK’s closet remains to be seen.

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The post Reform UK Candidate Resigns Over Controversial Comments first appeared on Edge Media.

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Grant Gallacher is a seasoned writer with expertise in politics and impactful daily news. His work, deeply rooted in addressing issues that resonate with a wide audience, showcases an unwavering commitment to bringing forth the stories that matter. He is also known for satirical writing and stand up comedy.

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