Saturday , July 13 2024

Fury as Liberal Democrat hopeful MP is caught on doorbell camera making an anti-Liverpool slur while canvassing

A Liberal Democrat candidate was today accused of ‘reinforcing derogatory stereotypes’ after being caught on a doorbell camera making an anti-Liverpool slur while canvassing for votes.

Lisa Smart, 45, is standing for Parliament in Hazel Grove, where the Lib Dems have attacked the Tories for picking a Liverpool-born candidate to stand against her as ‘yet another insult’.

But while knocking on doors and speaking to voters in the Greater Manchester constituency, the would-be MP encountered a woman with a Liverpudlian accent who was visiting family.

After the woman explained she was registered to vote in Liverpool, a smirking Ms Smart replied: ‘Ah, understood – so you’ve just been nicking stuff while you’re here.’

Shocked, she told her relative who was horrified to watch the insult recorded on his doorbell camera.

Liberal Democrat candidate Lisa Smart, 45, was today accused of 'reinforcing derogatory stereotypes' after being caught on a doorbell camera making an anti-Liverpool slur while canvassing for votes

Liberal Democrat candidate Lisa Smart, 45, was today accused of ‘reinforcing derogatory stereotypes’ after being caught on a doorbell camera making an anti-Liverpool slur while canvassing for votes

Ms Smart with Liberal Democrat leader Sir Ed Davey at a primary school on January 12, 2024

Ms Smart with Liberal Democrat leader Sir Ed Davey at a primary school on January 12, 2024

‘It’s a totally unacceptable comment for a politician to make,’ he told Mail Online today.

‘There was already an anti-Liverpool tone to their local campaign – it feels like a cheap tactic to whip up rivalry between neighbouring cities.’

Hazel Grove is one of the Liberal Democrats’ top-ten Tory-held seats, with Ms Smart – a local councillor – winning almost 39 per cent of the votes at the 2019 general election.

William Wragg won with a 4,423 vote majority, but is not standing again having resigning the Tory whip after admitting handing over phone numbers for fellow MPs after falling victim to a suspected Westminster honeytrap plot.

Instead the party has selected Paul Athans, who spent 12 years in the regular Army, reaching the rank of Major.

After being alerted to the video, Mr Athans – who transferred to the Army Reserves after being selected for the seat – told Mail Online: ‘This supposed “joke” reinforces derogatory stereotypes and is completely unacceptable.

Shocked, the resident told her relative who was horrified to watch the insult recorded on his doorbell camera

Shocked, the resident told her relative who was horrified to watch the insult recorded on his doorbell camera

William Wragg (pictured) won with a 4,423 vote majority, but is not standing again having resigning the Tory whip after admitting handing over phone numbers for fellow MPs after falling victim to a suspected Westminster honeytrap plot

William Wragg (pictured) won with a 4,423 vote majority, but is not standing again having resigning the Tory whip after admitting handing over phone numbers for fellow MPs after falling victim to a suspected Westminster honeytrap plot

‘I hope the voters of Hazel Grove will see this incident as just the tip of the iceberg that has been a nasty, negative, and misleading Lib Dem campaign.’

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The encounter came after the Lib Dems highlighted that Liverpool was his birthplace in a pre-election leaflet headlined ‘Yet another insult’.

It read: ‘People in our communities have been left angered by the latest insult from the Conservative Party.

‘Our Conservative MP is quitting at the next election. And Conservative Party bosses have picked a candidate from Liverpool to replace him!

‘The Conservative Government have abandoned the North West – crashing the economy, failing our health services, and most recently cancelling HS2.

‘Now they expect people here to vote for a candidate even they describe as ‘Liverpool’s own’.’

After being alerted to the video, a Liberal Democrat spokesperson said: ‘Lisa is genuinely mortified that she unintentionally caused offence: she has since returned to the address and given a fulsome apology.’

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