November 25, 2019 10.45 am This story is over 24 months old

Lincoln Conservative candidate Karl McCartney faces suspension calls for far-right retweets

He allegedly shared the views of Tommy Robinson on social media

Conservative Lincoln candidate in the upcoming general election, and former MP for Lincoln, Karl McCartney is facing calls by an anti racism and fascism group for his suspension after he was exposed for allegedly promoting far-right views on social media.

Campaign group ‘Hope Not Hate’ accused the Conservative parliamentary candidate for Lincoln of repeatedly retweeting the far-right content “over the course of a few months” and called for the party to suspend him.

Among social media ‘offences’, the group claimed that Karl McCartney defended the actions of the former leader of the English Defence League Tommy Robinson.

Tommy Robinson has been widely condemned as Islamophobic but ‘Hope Not Hate’ claims that Karl McCartney has shared his views.

One of the retweets allegedly included a so-called letter in which Tommy Robinson claimed his murder would spark a revolution:

“I’ve always said I’d sacrifice my life tomorrow if it would end the Islamic takeover of our beautiful land,” is part of the letter Karl McCartney reportedly shared.

A screenshot from ‘Hope Not Hate’ of Karl McCartney retweeting another far-right activist.

‘Hope Not Hate’ also alleged that Karl McCartney shared tweets from Katie Hopkins over the course of a few months, including one where she defended Tommy Robinson.

This tweet came from May 2018: “Tommy warned us about these rape gangs. You laughed and called him a racist. Tommy will die in prison at the hands of these gangs.

“You will laugh and say it served him right. Then you will remember YOU have a daughter. #TommyRobinson”

It was not entirely clear when Mr McCartney retweeted the posts.

Karl McCartney was screenshotted sharing the views of Paul Joseph Watson, another far-right activist who criticises Islam, feminism and left-wing politics.

The Lincolnite reached out to Karl McCartney but he was unavailable at the time of writing, instead, his communications team sent a statement:

Karl McCartney. Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

Mr McCartney said in a statement:

“I apologise unreservedly. In no way do I endorse the tweets or the accounts behind them. I accept retweeting them was ill-judged and could cause offence.

“This divisive figure has no place in our politics or public life.”

Nick Lowles, chief executive at ‘Hope Not Hate,’ said: “There’s no excuse for promoting far-right propaganda.

“Spreading the hateful views of a thug like Tommy Robinson or the vile comments of Katie Hopkins demonstrates that Karl McCartney isn’t a fit to be an MP.

“Karl McCartney’s weak apology can’t be the end of the matter. This wasn’t a one-off accident, but many retweets of far-right content over a sustained period.

“He’s failed to explain why he would have promoted these views in the first place.

“If the Conservative Party is serious about tackling Islamophobia and prejudice within its ranks it must suspend him as a candidate immediately.”

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