Lib Dem candidate deselected for calling for Tories to be 'burned at the stake'

16 September 2019, 19:27 | Updated: 16 September 2019, 21:26

A Liberal Democrat parliamentary candidate has been deselected after saying senior Conservatives should be "burned at the stake".

Galen Milne has been removed as the party's candidate for Banff and Buchan in northeast Scotland after he made the comments on social media.

The remarks were directed towards Boris Johnson, Jacob Rees-Mogg, Michael Gove, Liam Fox and David Davies.

In the post, Mr Milne reportedly wrote: "Johnson, Fox, Gove, Davis, Rees-Mogg should be hung, drawn and quartered, with each quarter being sent to the 4 corners of the UK to be burned at the stake."

He is also said to have described Tory MPs as "rats" who "rear their ugly heads".

After his deselection, Mr Milne said: "I deeply regret the offensive statements on social media.

"I want to apologise to anyone that I have offended."

A spokesman for the Scottish Liberal Democrats said: "Such language is unacceptable and offensive, Galen Milne will not be a Liberal Democrat candidate at the general election."

Mr Milne had stood for the party in the same seat at the 2017 general election.

Mr Rees-Mogg appeared to make light of the comments, writing on Twitter: "Typical Lib Dem. Mr Milne should get his facts straight. As Lord President of the Council, I am entitled to the privilege of being beheaded."

Meanwhile, another Lib Dem has apologised, for comments linking the Brexit vote in her prospective constituency to the fact that it is "demographically 98% white".

Dr Kirsten Johnson, who is standing for the party in North Devon, made the remark when she was asked about the support in the area for leaving the EU in the 2016 referendum.

She told the BBC: "Demographically it's 98% white, we don't have a lot of ethnic minorities living in North Devon.

"People aren't exposed to people from other countries. They don't travel a lot.

"So I think there is a slight disconnect, that North Devon being isolated and rural and being low income, perhaps it hasn't appreciated the advantages of being in the European Union."

When asked what the number of ethnic minority voters had to do with that, she replied: "I didn't mean to mean that it has anything to do with it at all - just saying that when I speak to people I am hearing comments to me… when it… it refers to race. You've got....you've got me in a corner here."

Pressed again on what she meant, Ms Johnson said: "I think my concern is the rise of hate crimes, and the rise of people not being able to accept otherness.

"I saw that translated when it comes to some of the euroscepticism I was hearing on the doorstep."

She wrote on Twitter: "I apologise for the offense my comments have caused.

"I misspoke and these comments do not reflect my views or that of my party."