Even Reform UK Candidates Have Had Enough of Party’s Racism

Two high-profile Reform UK candidates have abruptly defected to the Conservatives, citing widespread racism within the party. Here’s the full story. 

Racial Slur Scandal

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Just days after Reform UK found itself embroiled in a racism row after Channel 4 filmed one of their candidates using a racial slur to describe Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, the party has suffered a dual blow with polling day imminent.

Dual Candidate Resignation

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Two of Reform UK’s election candidates, Georgie David, formerly the candidate for West Ham and Beckton, and Liam Booth-Isherwood, who had been standing in Erewash, have both publicly stepped down from standing for the party over its failure to address widespread racism concerns within the party.

Party’s Sharp Decline

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The defections have brought into sharp focus the tumultuous rise and sharp fall of Reform UK, which, having started the general election campaign looking like it might beat the Conservatives in vote share, is rapidly haemorrhaging candidates and voters if the polls are to be believed.

First Candidate Quits

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The first candidate to go was Liam Booth-Isherwood, who severed ties with Reform UK after claiming there were “significant moral issues” with the party, which had been highlighted by “reports of widespread racism and sexism.”

Suspends Campaign, Endorses Tory

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After announcing that he would be suspending his campaign and endorsing the local Conservative candidate, Maggie Throup, Booth-Isherwood told the BBC, “Whilst I have campaigned alongside many decent, honest and hardworking people during the course of the general election campaign in Erewash, the reports of widespread racism and sexism in Reform have made clear that there is a significant moral issue within certain elements of the party.”

Leadership’s Failures Criticized

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He added, “The failure of the party’s leadership to not only take this matter seriously but also to fundamentally address it has made clear to me that this is no longer a party I want to be associated with.”

Another Candidate Resigns

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Shortly after Booth-Isherwood’s announcement, another Reform UK candidate, Georgie David, the party’s candidate in West Ham and Beckton, announced her resignation.

Resignation Statement: “Vastly Opposing Views”

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In a startling statement, David stated, “I am in no doubt that the party and its senior leadership are not racist. As the vast majority of candidates are indeed racist, misogynistic, and bigoted, I do not wish to be directly associated with people who hold such views that are so vastly opposing to my own and what I stand for.”

Issues Brushed “Under the Carpet”

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After criticising the party’s failure to tackle the issue, David scorned “their attempts to instead try to brush it under the carpet or cry foul play.”

Campaign Suspended, Conservatives Endorsed

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She added, “As such, I have now suspended my campaign with Reform, and I am endorsing the Conservative Party – I would encourage all of my fellow patriots to do the same.”

Leaders Deny Racism Allegations

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Following such unequivocal criticism of Reform UK, the party’s leader, Nigel Farage, and chairman, Richard Tice, vehemently denied allegations of systemic racism within their ranks.

“Dark Forces at Play”

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Tice suggested that his party’s candidates were being tempted with jobs “to persuade them to talk badly of Reform, stand down and then endorse the Tory candidate,” adding that there were “dark forces at play by desperate Tories.”

Farage Calls Allegations “Smear Campaign”

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Similarly, Farage dismissed the claims as part of a “smear campaign” orchestrated by rival parties and the media. He attributed the controversy to a few “bad apples” and assured supporters that these individuals had been removed from the party.

Media Accusations Unsettling Voters

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However, Farage’s failure to take accountability for the recurring issues and his accusations against media outlets like Channel 4 for allegedly fabricating evidence has done little to reassure voters that his anti-immigration party is not fundamentally racist.

Channel 4 Investigation Fallout

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The two candidates standing down from Reform UK comes days after a Channel 4 investigation, which caught canvassers making racially offensive comments.

Racist and Homophobic Remarks

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Andrew Parker, a canvasser, was filmed using a racial slur to describe the prime minister and making derogatory remarks about Islam and migrants. Another canvasser made homophobic comments, labelling the LGBT community as “degenerate.”

Activists Distanced, Reputation Damaged

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These incidents led to the party distancing itself from several activists and candidates, but its reputation had already been damaged. Farage’s response was to discredit the investigation, claiming it was a “put-up job” involving paid actors, an accusation Channel 4 has firmly denied.

Farage Faces Party Crisis

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The news could not come at a worse time for Farage and Reform UK. Farage, who had been actively campaigning for Reform UK to become the “voice of the opposition,” is now facing the daunting task of holding the party together as racism allegations threaten to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

Future Uncertain for Reform UK

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As the party attempts to grapple with severe accusations of racism from both inside and outside of Reform UK, it remains to be seen whether, following public outcry, Farage will be able to lead the party to its first elected seats in Parliament.

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The post Even Reform UK Candidates Have Had Enough of Party’s Racism 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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