Robert Bilcliff is standing as a candidate for the UK Independence Party in the local elections in Tamworth. The Mail on Sunday reported that Bilcliff’s response to the legalisation of same-sex marriage last month was to post a comment on Twitter reading: “Sad day for all us straight people.”
The Mail also reported that in a Facebook post in July 2012 Bilcliff “made a joke against Muslims”. Bilcliff told the paper: “I am not racist and never have been. I have many friends of different nationalities but I enjoy a joke every now and again.”
The Mail didn’t quote the “joke”, so here it is:
Despite a UKIP spokesperson assuring the Mail that the matter had been referred to the the party’s national executive with a view to disciplinary action, this post remains on Bilcliff’s Facebook page and he hasn’t bothered to delete it.
This would suggest that Bilcliff doesn’t take terribly seriously party leader Nigel Farage’s insistence that UKIP candidates found to be racist will have their official endorsement withdrawn. Or perhaps it’s just that Bilcliff doesn’t think Islamophobia qualifies as racism.
It may be that Farage agrees. At any rate, he doesn’t appear to have a problem with Magnus Nielsen standing as a candidate for Camden Council and speaking on behalf of the party in his capacity as chairman of the Brent & Camden branch.