Labour candidate victim of ‘smears’ defended by Tory fighting for same seat
A Conservative parliamentary candidate, including a former Tory party chair, has defended a Labour parliamentary candidate who has been victim to an alleged ‘smear campaign’.
Baroness Sayeeda Warsi and George Grant defended Labour parliamentary candidate Naz Shah following claims of threatening phone-calls and abuse allegedly made towards her.
She was also victim to an anonymous Twitter troll who made up an account in her name, posting up provocative messages.
Baroness Warsi and Mr Grant claim that in the past few weeks, Bradford West has deteriorated in the “basic standards of decency” in the parliamentary campaign ahead of the elections.
In a joint statement, they said: “Threats, harassment and vulgar smears have no place in political life, as they have no place in life generally. It is frankly immaterial that our politics and the politics of Ms Shah diverge very widely on many issues. We can be united in the fact that respect and fair-play should count for much more in the final analysis.
“The defining feature of a democratic society is its capacity to accommodate individuals and groups with different points of view. Any attempt to put-down or silence somebody simply for who they are or what they stand for is, by definition, undemocratic.
“We call on whoever is involved in this smear campaign to respect both the democratic process in Bradford West, as well as basic principles of human decency, and to bring an end to this behaviour immediately.”
Ms Shah tweeted a link to the statement saying: “Humanity first :-)…”.
Last month, Mr Grant promoted a link to a letter she penned detailing her life story which went viral, calling it “inspiring”.
Both Mr Grant and Ms Shah will be contesting each other for the Bradford West seat in the upcoming elections.
George Galloway MP, leader of the Respect party, will hope to retain his seat.