UKIP’s gaffe-prone Scottish operation blundered on today as the party were evicted from a Tesco cafe in Glasgow’s east end while trying to hold a press conference there. With their lead Scottish Euro Election candidate David Coburn having spent the last few days tweeting about how popular he is in the area, it’s probably safe to assume this wasn’t what he had in mind when he called the event. Coburn, the party’s “Nigel of the North” and the man hoping to be UKIP’s first Scottish MEP, reliably informed his twitter followers that UKIP have gained so much ground in Shettleston – where he’s originally from – that he was “mobbed and cheered” on his return there on Monday, presumably as hundreds of locals poured out of their houses to shower their new saviour with carnations or something…. As the party enters its final day of campaigning before the election, today was supposed to be along those lines – a slightly premature victory rally in front of the nation’s media.
Alas, it wasn’t quite to be. With the details of their meeting leaking on Reddit the night before, by the time I showed up just before its scheduled 10am start time, all 10 of them – ie. most of their Scottish membership – has been chucked out of the store and were engaging in scrappy arguments with half a dozen protesters who’d come along to question them. Given that a couple of weeks ago UKIP spectacularly failed to organise a coherent press conference in an er, conference centre in Edinburgh (piss ups and breweries spring to mind), becoming a laughing stock for the entire Scottish press corps in the process, it’s unclear why they suddenly thought that having one inside Tesco would be a good idea. Nonetheless, the media seem to have taken a hint from Edinburgh’s farcical Farage stunt and collectively forgot to show up today, save for a sole Morning Star reporter and a BBC crew who made a fleeting appearance.
While it wasn’t quite on the same level as yesterday’s Croydon shambles, where UKIP’s bid to hold a multicultural “we’re definitely not racist” carnival ended up being mobbed by protesters and the samba band they’d hired walking out on them, today’s bumbling operation was a fitting final call for the party’s Scottish election campaign, which has been riven by internal fall outs. As we’ve reported previously, at one stage almost all of their Scottish candidates dropped out in protest at Coburn being parachuted in from London, where he lives and works, to stand here. This makes Coburn’s whole “local man for local people” schtick in Shettleston even more hilarious, although he is currently claiming to be living in Edinburgh, where he moved to a whole one month ago.
With nothing better to do today, the assembled UKIP minions decided to start arguing with those who’d come along to protest, giving them the opportunity to show their disdain for swear words (“you’re really diminishing your own arguments”) and justify their wacky proposals for flat taxation (“it’s just a flat tax not a poll tax”) and scrapping maternity leave, with some homophobia thrown in for good measure too! However, when a BBC crew showed up they took to desperately offering a “rational debate” elsewhere in the carpark to allow Coburn’s interview to continue to peace. An enticing prospect.
This whole drama was unfolding in front of an increasingly agitated Tesco store manager who had long since called the polis, who eventually intervened to chuck everyone out of the car park and move them to a pavement 50 feet away. The whole thing was over and done with in half an hour – no samba band, ad vans, joyous crowds or even much media attention – just ten Ukippers trotting out the party line that they’re not racist ’cause some of their best friends are from ethnic minorities. One even showed me her driving license to prove she has a Spanish surname – multicultural or what? With that they sauntered back to their BMW 4X4s (how can they be racist if they have a German car, bet you didn’t think of that huh???) looking like a really shit version of Reservoir Dogs, and drove off in search of cheering crowds elsewhere. I think they may be looking for some time.
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And yet polls put UKIP in Scotland ahead of the Greens, making them SNP’s lead competitor for the European Parliament seat that the LibDems are going to so deservedly lose tomorrow. Perhaps even Scotland is not wholly exempt from the current malaise of democracy.
Paul, do you have a link that supports the idea that UKIP ride so high in Scotland? A most recent stated they barely hit 9%. Much less than is required to gain a seat in Scotland. In a link below John Curtice (Professor of Politics at Strathclyde University) concurs with my knowledge, and contradicts your view. I would suggest your then inferred slur on Scotland joining in the apparent failure of thought that is transpiring in England is both inaccurate and insulting to the average Scot.
UKIP’s popularity seems to be based on people and the media just will not stop talking about them – Thus raising their profile amongst the average voter. Clearly, the detractors of UKIP seem ironically to be very cause of UKIP’s success.
We are not disagreeing. Your link shows UKIP ahead of LibDem and Green, SNP ahead of Labour,and the contest for the ex-LibDem seat to be between UKIP (at 9%) and SNP (at, in effect, 37%/3). Nowhere near as bad as in other parts of what I hope to soon be able to refer to as the Former United Kingdom, but still pathologically high. BTW, my grandmother was from Romania.
Thanks for the reply. It seemed I was at fault in misinterpreting the salient point of the LIb-Dems demise of their seat, and ensuing scramble for the afore mentioned seat. Versus the ascendency of the SNP position at the top end of the vote. Thus an apology is due on my part: Sorry.
I am sure your Mother would have been pleased to know of her offspring being part of the very movement that negates the very man who detracts both her country and people so bitterly.
Well done Shettleston, and well done Tesco for chucking them out of their premises!
Nigel of the North? He’s the London Organiser. Is London the north in the world of UKIP? Might have known the BBC would be there though. If UKIP don’t get votes it won;t be through lack of effort by the BBC
There was only 3 protestors there, me (Darren Carnegie), my Dad (Andrew Carnegie) and a man with a bald head hurling rubbish abuse at them. I got them kicked out of the Tesco café with a proper diplomatic roasting! The video is on my facebook page if youse would like to have a look.
Once again we have the unedifying sight of a legitimate political meeting being broken up by moronic, intolerant, barely literate (judging by D Carnegie’s posting) yobbos. A hoodie with a comical haircut and some weird object stuck in his ear shouting abuse hardly amounts to serious political debate! No doubt we taxpayers are paying
for these dole-scroungers (which I’m sure they are) to have the time to indulge in this nonsense. They won’t be so eager to spend their time looking for work. UKIP is an island of sanity in the midst of this idiocy. They already have my vote today – and in Glasgow East at that!
cool story bro
Is this comment in jest? I really do presume that you can’t be serious.
https://t.co/9BjnqEctvY here is the link of me gate crashing their meeting!
Tartan UKIP seem a strange outfit.
A mixture of well healed Thatcherites and the wired to the moon bigots.
What would gay Coburn MEP have in common with the Airdrie flute band leader that stood as the UKIP candidate in the Coatbridge council by-election.
Sounds a bit like the 1930s Billy Boys running with Mosley and being chased out of Bridgeton by the local left.
Well worth the watching me thinks.