Boris Johnson and Ken Livingstone have been giving their reactions to calls by the BNP for backers to give their second preference votes in May’s Mayoral elections to Johnson.
A statement on the BNP website suggests members “hold your nose and cast it in favour of the Conservative candidate, Boris Johnson. This is not because we think that Johnson would be any good as Mayor – he is as Politically Correct as any of the other candidates and has no real ties to our London – but because he wouldn’t be actively bad in the way that Livingstone is.”
The statement continues “in this race, the Tory clown Johnson is a lesser evil than the Marxist crank Livingstone, so replacing the latter with the former would, on balance, be an improvement for the majority of Londoners. So even if Johnson condemns the BNP (and as a Tory ‘wet’ he’s bound to), a second choice vote for him gives you the chance to vote BNP as your first preference and still vote to get Livingstone out of office.”
The BNP is running Barking & Dagenham Councillor Richard Barnbrook as a candidate in the Mayoral race and is also fielding candidates for the London Assembly.
Mr Johnson said he “utterly and unreservedly condemns the BNP and have no desire whatsoever to receive a single second preference vote from a BNP supporter.”
“I hope as many Londoners as possible turn out on May 1st to prevent the election of a BNP candidate.”
“I believe my messages to make the streets safer, improve public transport, protect open spaces and deliver value for money will resonate with voters generally and make them realise they can vote for change in these elections.”
Mr Livingstone said “That the BNP have called for a second preference vote to the Tory against me is no surprise. I hate and despise everything the BNP stand for as against every value of London as a great multi-ethnic tolerant and diverse city.”