Faith leaders and politicians from across Manchester and beyond have united to condemn the anti-Islam activist Tommy Robinson, who has announced plans to stand as an MEP in the European elections.
The pressure group HOPE not hate is calling on everyone to make sure they register to vote by the deadline of 7th May, and ensure they, their friends and community turn out on polling day. The organisation is also launching a new fact-check site, TommyRobinsonFacts.com, tonight.
Nick Lowles, chief executive of HOPE not hate, said: “Stephen Lennon is a far-right thug who uses his platform to bully, abuse and stir up division, monetising his hatred to rake in donations from his fans. He has a long record of abuse towards minorities such as Muslims and wherever he goes trouble has followed.
“Standing in this election is just another way for Lennon to line his pockets, at the expense of democracy and voters.”
Twitter users had a lot to say on his decision to run in the elections.
Tommy Robinson announced he’s running as an independent MEP.— Momentum (@PeoplesMomentum) April 25, 2019
A reminder he:
??Called British Muslims ‘enemy combatants’
??Threatens critics outside their homes
??Inspired Darren Osbourne who drove into Muslim worshipers
Britain doesn’t need a far-right thug representing it.
Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, also known as Tommy Robinson, has organised an event in Wythenshawe. Together with leaders from across our community I would like to share this statement. Yaxley-Lennon’s far-right political views are not welcome in our town and our great city. pic.twitter.com/fFmalxQX0Q— Mike Kane (@MikeKaneMP) April 24, 2019
If ‘Tommy Robinson’ was elected as an MEP, he’d have access to your address on the electoral roll. Trust me, you don’t want that.— Mike Stuchbery?? (@MikeStuchbery_) April 25, 2019
Do not vote for him. He is a racist, rabble-rousing fraud. https://t.co/GGXgGJnfQs— Paul Embery (@PaulEmbery) April 25, 2019
At every step, people keep playing down the threat of Tommy Robinson and complacency will lead to a nasty shock. If you are able to vote against him, then you should, you really should. https://t.co/n5vIXhl0sp— Question Everything (@Challengeitnow) April 25, 2019
Tommy Robinson, a repeat offender with a history of violent crime & drug abuse, whose material has radicalised murderers & who is facing a retrial for contempt of court, is able to stand for election?— Jon Bowen (@Jon_Bowen) April 25, 2019
What a piss-poor excuse for a country this is.
Tommy Robinson Euro election launch not off to the best start. He just announced no more free burgers at his rally in Wythenshawe as the police called to say free food breaks election law. pic.twitter.com/WWlwKvkXSc— Patrick Hurst (@paddyhurst) April 25, 2019
Bus wanker ‘Tommy Robinson’ announces plans to stand as MEP | UK news | The Guardian— Gina (@Saffiya_Khan1) April 25, 2019
It is expected he will be joined at the Manchester event tonight by the For Britain leader, Anne Marie Waters, who has described Islam as “evil”