People are calling on prime minister Boris Johnson to reject the endorsement of far-right activist and convicted criminal Stephen Yaxley-Lennon.
More widely known as Tommy Robinson, the English Defence League founder told his followers to back the prime minister, saying: “Go Boris.”
Robinson was asked about Brexit, and replied:
Everyone should vote for Boris Johnson.
And I’m so happy with what Nigel Farage has done. He should attack the Labour heartlands.
If we want Brexit, if we believe in democracy, we have to have Brexit. So yeah. Go Boris.
Jo Swinson, leader of the Liberal Democrats, has called on Johnson to reject the far-right endorsement. She wrote in a letter:
Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, also known as Tommy Robinson, today encouraged people to vote for you in the general election.
The letter asks Johnson to “publicly reject his endorsement” and “dog-whistle politics”, adding:
There should be no place for figures such as Yaxley-Lennon in British politics and his endorsement should be anathema to any candidate seeking to improve the lives of people across the UK.
The move also drew condemnation on Twitter, with people branding Robinson a “racist thug”.