The Guardian and the Independent today both report on the resignation of Andrew Brons MEP from the British National Party. Brons is one of the two BNP members elected to the European Parliament in the 2009 elections.
From the Guardian:
“Divisions that may spell the end of the far right British National party exploded into the open on Tuesday with the departure of one of its two MEPs.
“Andrew Brons announced he was quitting the BNP with an angry statement claiming that up to 90% of the party's membership, activists and former officials had already left. He blamed the party chairman, Nick Griffin, for "having destroyed the party of which he is still nominally head".
"Over the last 16 or 18 months, I have been marginalised to such an extent in what is left of the British National party that I have been expelled in all but name,"
“Observers of the British far right predict Brons will launch a new party in competition with the BNP.
“Brons has been distancing himself from Griffin for some time and last year appeared to back an unsuccessful leadership challenge by Richard Edmonds, prompting speculation that he was preparing to lead a breakaway group.
“Brons became the BNP's first MEP in 2009 after receiving 120,139 votes in the Yorkshire and Humber region. He was a teenager when he started his political activism in the mid 1960s, joining the neo-Nazi National Socialist Movement.
“By the 1970s, he had moved on to the National Front, then the leading far-right group in Britain. He was voted on to the NF's national directorate in 1974 and, as the NF's education officer, he hosted seminars on racial nationalism and tried to give its racism a more scientific basis.”
The BNP’s success at the European parliamentary elections in 2009 was followed shortly by a near wipe-out for the party in the 2010 general and local elections and the local council elections the following year. Despite the steady decline in the electoral fortunes of the BNP, the UK has not been immune to far-right populism with the English Defence League announcing just last week that it will become a political party in time to contest European parliamentary elections in 2014.
In the upcoming Police and Crime Commissioner Elections in November, far right members who will be standing in the election include one candidate from the British Freedom Party and six from the English Democrats.
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