Two Tory local election candidates suspended after controversial Holocaust posts

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Two Tory local election candidates suspended after controversial Holocaust posts

Ashley Sykes, standing for the Tories in the Ashby Lakeside ward of North Lincolnshire Council, has also been suspended from the party for sharing jokes about the Holocaust online.

Lee Harpin is the Jewish News's political editor

Suspended Tory candidate Stanley Murphy
Suspended Tory candidate Stanley Murphy

A Conservative local election candidate has been suspended after sharing a post on social media post that linked the deportation of Jews under the Nazis with criticism of gun control regulations.

Stanley Murphy, the Tory hopeful in the Ivybridge West seat in south Devon, had shared an image on his Facebook page of Jews being forced onto trains during the “Grossaktion” in 1942.

Victims loaded onto were trains deported from the Warsaw Ghetto before being sent to the extermination camp in Treblinka.

The post includes the words: “Why gun control? Because armed people will NOT willingly load themselves into railroad boxcars.”

Image shared by Tory candidate

The implication that Jews would have been less likely to have been slaughtered in the Holocaust was backed by a further claim on Murphy’s personal Facebook page that if parents spent time with their children at rifle ranges it would be “quality family time and gun control all in one”.

The Conservative candidate also reposted a YouTube video in which a British man in the United States aggressively criticises a school programme to improve the attainment of black students.

He also displayed support for right-wing American ideology associated with former US president Donald Trump, while claiming the Covid vaccination programme was an experiment on the population and that some equality programmes in schools are “communism.”

His comments were unearthed by the Local Democracy Reporting Service.

A spokesperson for South West Devon Conservative Association said: “South West Devon Conservative Association (SWDCA) has been made aware of comments made by Stanley Murphy – a Conservative Candidate – in relation to both the Covid Vaccination process and the Holocaust.SWDCA condemns the comments made by Mr Murphy.. SWDCA has taken the decision to suspend Mr Murphy, pending an investigation into his comments on social media.”

Despite the suspension, Murphy’s name will remain on the ballot for local elections on May 4th.

Meanwhile Ashley Sykes, standing for the Tories in the Ashby Lakeside ward of North Lincolnshire Council, has also been suspended from the party for sharing jokes about the Holocaust online.

The posts on his Facebook page, which date back to 2016, also included racist and homophobic memes.

A Conservative Party spokesperson said it had “acted swiftly” to suspend Mr Sykes once the material came to light.

The posts, which were not written by Mr Sykes, included references to the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp and the 2016 mass shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando in which 49 people were killed.

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