The husband of ex MP the late Candy Atherton has called on disgraced Tory council candidate Richard Cunningham to do the right thing and step down from the by-election caused by Candy’s death.
In a Cornish Stuff exclusive, it was revealed this week that Cunningham, an ex-student at Penryn Campus who has stayed on in Cornwall had previously shared Nazi themed Memes and other offensive material.
He is standing for election for the Conservatives to Cornwall Council and Falmouth Town Council with the vote due to take place this Thursday.
Candy’s husband Broderick Ross commented on Cornish Stuff’s story
“It is with real surprise that I find a candidate for my wife’s former seat of Smithick posting offensive material on the internet.
This is without doubt one of the most crass things that I have seen in twenty five years of politics, and is not that anyone of sense would wish to see. Candy Atherton understood that to fight for your political views required sense, humor, and political nous to make things happen in real world politics, not idiocy and amateurism of this nature.
I call on Mr Cunningham to do the right thing and withdraw from this election.
Failing that I ask that the electorate of the ward to not vote for him, regardless of party allegiance”
Broderick Ross. Husband of the late Candy Atherton
Cunningham’s brief statement apologised, saying he was 19 at the time, young and stupid. He’s only 22 now. He has so far refused to step down despite mounting pressure.
“I want to apologise for sharing these posts. I was 19 years old at the time but I realise they are totally inappropriate. I’m now older and wiser and am standing for election to serve my community” – Cunningham’s statement
Labour Group Leader at the Council, Cllr Tim Dwelly is also calling for the Conservatives to find another candidate.
“There is no way the Tories can continue fighting this by-election with a candidate who thinks posting jokes about the Nazi SS on Facebook is funny. Falmouth voters whose families experienced the Second World War or the Holocaust may have other ideas.
I have written to both Sarah Newton MP and the Conservative Group Leader Phil Seeva asking if they still think Richard Cunningham is a suitable candidate to become a Cornwall Councillor. So far I have yet to receive a response.”
MORE CORNISH NEWS
But the plot thickens. Mr Cunningham’s political allegiances seem to be somewhat erratic.
It appears that up until fairly recently, last year in fact, Cunningham was happily working for the local Lib Dems. The Falmouth & Penryn branch have an article from the Council election campaign in May 2017 with Cunningham part of the team campaigning for Cllr Matthew McCarthy. The group includes ex MP Julia Goldsworthy.
Cunningham’s time with the Lib Dems does not coincide with the dates of most of the sick posts that have been revealed.
However, one with a Nazi reference is from his time with them. Cunningham’s post about openly gay Nazi Ernst Rohm was posted Jan 4th 2017.
The article on the branch website that still uses the photo with Cunningham has been so recently updated it actually mentions the passing of Candy Atherton and the by election Cunningham is fighting on behalf of the Conservative Party!
Cunningham’s association with the Lib Dems lasted at least a year. Here he is, pictured in a post about a visit to Falmouth Docks dated June 2016 – he’s actually named in photo caption!
These links were live at time of publication, lets see how long they last :
Thx to James Mason.
Election day in Falmouth Smithick is this Thursday 1 Feb.
A full list of candidates standing in the Cornwall Council by-election can be found here
A full list of candidates standing in the Falmouth Town Council by-election can be found here