By Simon Green
For those of you who did not think that UKIP could become any more farcical, Henry Bolton has proved that this indeed is possible.
His relationship with a model, Jo Marney, was propelled into the media limelight when texts revealing offensive racially insensitive comments were reported by a national newspaper.
Ms Marney’s texts were sent to Bolton following the story of Meghan Markle’s engagement to Prince Harry, in which she stated that black people are “ugly” and that their children would taint the Royal family.
The UKIP leader immediately condemned the comments as “utterly indefensible” and has subsequently split up with Ms Marney, who is apparently distraught over the public release of her texts.
Beyond the deplorable nature of the comments, politically it does not seem like this has damaged UKIP or Henry Bolton’s reputation. It is telling that Mr Bolton has not resigned or been removed from his role. This perhaps shows the lack of suitable replacements in the party ranks.
The popularity of the far-right party has drastically diminished since Nigel Farage relinquished the leadership and it now seems that the only times they make the news are during a leadership change or leader-related gaff is revealed. The attention surrounding Mr Bolton’s private life reveals a party which wants to sell itself as the sharp-end of pro-Brexit scrutiny, but in reality is an incredibly blunt political instrument.
Photograph: Derek Bennet via Flickr