A Ukip-branded leaflet has suggested benefit claimants should be banned from driving on UK roads to ease congestion.
The document, which appears to have been sent out by the campaign of Lynton Yates, the Ukip candidate for Charnwood in Leicestershire, asks why claimants “have the privilege to spend the taxpayer’s hard-earned money on a car” and suggests they instead “catch a bus”.
“We could likely remove six million cars from the road if benefit claimants were not driving,” it reads. “Why do they have the privilege to spend the taxpayer’s hard-earned money on a car, when those in work are struggling to keep their own car on the road? These people could really catch a bus!”
> So they no longer buy petrol or oil, pay for repairs, etc – less money into the economy and less tax paid – VAT. We’re all tax payers, whatever our employment status.
And even if you did ban them, what difference would it make to those in work are struggling to keep their own car on the road ? They’ll still be struggling.
UKIP non-thinking at its best !
Ukip confirmed that the leaflet had been sent out by the campaign team of one of its candidates but a spokesman stressed:
“These are not Ukip policies and they will not form part of the Ukip manifesto.”
Yates, a local councillor on Leicester county council’s transport committee, did not respond to a request for comment.
Labour’s shadow health minister Jamie Reed said Ukip was “not so much a political party but a stag night out of control”.
The leaflet, which emerged on the Facebook page of a Charnwood resident, echoes the suggestion of the former Ukip MEP Godfrey Bloom that benefit claimants should not vote.
In past local and EU elections Ukip has struggled to keep track of racist, homophobic and bizarre statements made by a handful of candidates. It will hope to keep such incidents to a minimum in the runup to the general election as it has brought in much stricter vetting regime for candidates.
> Nevertheless, this is still how these people think, what they believe. Do we want them in any public office (wages paid by the taxpayer, don’t forget).
This article was written by Rowena Mason, political correspondent, for The Guardian on Wednesday 21st January 2015