Andy McSmith's Diary: Social media is turning out to be a right Pain for Ukip

Ukip may be gaining recruits, but holding on to some of the gains they made only last month is proving to be a challenge. They had their greatest success in Lincolnshire, where they have emerged as the main opposition on the county council, under the leadership of Chris Pain, who has an ambition to be the next MP for Boston and Skegness. Today, he stepped down as chairman of the East Midlands regional party pending a police investigation into racist comments that appeared on his Facebook page. Mr Pain denies authorship. He says that his Facebook account was hacked. The Ukip national executive has agreed to "suspend judgment".

Two other Lincolnshire Ukip councillors have drawn controversy over remarks posted on social media, including Alan Jessom, who has not denied telling a Polish woman, via Facebook: "F*** off we don't need you sweetheart we get along just fine without you" – but Ukip's national executive has decided that this and other posts do not merit disciplinary action.

Ukip has lost a councillor in Worcestershire, Eric Kitson, who resigned after 14 days in office over racist entries on the social media. One of their Cambridgeshire councillors, Peter Lagoda, has been charged with benefit fraud. In Norfolk, Ukip's Peter Georgiou's position on the county council is looking shaky since it emerged that he was caught shoplifting a year ago.

In May, the party lost a donor, Demetri Marchessini, who gave them £20,000, after embarrassing the party with his views on unmarried mothers, who he thinks need a slap, or women in trousers, whom he regards as "hostile". On the European stage, Europe of Freedom and Democracy, the parliamentary group to which Ukip's MEPs are signed up, has lost one of its Italian members, Mario Borghezio, whom they expelled after he had denounced Italy's Cabinet as "the government of Bonga Bonga" because one of its ministers is not white.

Ukip's leadership is anxious to dispel the idea put about by David Cameron and Ken Clarke that they are a party of clowns, fruitcakes and closet racists.

The dragon is in the detail, Nick...

"Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg is teaming up with entrepreneur and former Dragon's Den judge James Caan to make access to jobs fair and open for all," says the opening line of the latest Downing Street announcement, which came hard on the heels of Mr Caan's highly publicised rebuke to parents who use their influence to find jobs for their children.

When Nick Clegg was but a lad, his father fixed him up with an unpaid internship in a Finnish bank. And he obtained his first full-time job, with the European Commission, with the help of his parents' neighbours, who put in a word with Lord Carrington, the former Foreign Secretary, who passed the request on to the Commissioner, Leon Brittan.

It's a case of don't do as my dad did, do as I say.

Harris leaves Tories speechless

David Cameron and his allies are an unpleasant bunch whose project has ended in abject failure, according to Margaret Thatcher's former speechwriter, Robin Harris, writing in Standpoint magazine.

"For sustained personal unpleasantness the Conservative modernisers deserve some kind of award. In private and in print, their long campaign was carried on in a tone of consistently venomous contempt," he wrote.

"The modernisers have not detoxified the Tory brand. They have simply made it unrecognisable, even to Tories."

Voices
The Sumatran tiger, endemic to the Indonesian island of Sumatra, is an endangered species
voicesJonathon Porritt: The wild tiger population is thought to have dropped by 97 per cent since 1900
News
news
Arts and Entertainment
Story line: Susanoo slays the Yamata no Orochi serpent in the Japanese version of a myth dating back 40,000 years
arts + entsApplying the theory of evolution to the world's many mythologies
Life and Style
Popular plonk: Lambrusco is selling strong
Food + drinkNaff Seventies corner-shop staple is this year's Aperol Spritz
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
News
Gardai wait for the naked man, who had gone for a skinny dip in Belfast Lough
newsTwo skinny dippers threatened with inclusion on sex offenders’ register as naturists criminalised
News
Shake down: Michelle and Barack Obama bump knuckles before an election night rally in Minnesota in 2008, the 'Washington Post' called it 'the fist bump heard round the world'
newsThe pound, a.k.a. the dap, greatly improves hygiene
Arts and Entertainment
La Roux
music
Arts and Entertainment
Graham Fellows as John Shuttleworth
comedySean O'Grady joins Graham Fellows down his local Spar
News
people
News
Ross Burden pictured in 2002
people
News
Elisabeth Murdoch: The 44-year-old said she felt a responsibility to 'stand up and be counted’'
media... says Rupert Murdoch
Arts and Entertainment
tv
Extras
indybest
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Junior / Graduate Application Support Engineer

£26000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A highly successful international media organ...

QA Manager - North Manchester - Nuclear & MOD - £40k+

£35000 - £41000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: QA Manager -...

Property Finance Partner

Very Competitive Salary: Austen Lloyd: LONDON - BANKING / PROPERTY FINANCE - ...

Agile Tester

£28000 - £30000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: An ambitious...

Day In a Page

A new Russian revolution: Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc

A new Russian revolution

Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc
Eugene de Kock: Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

The debate rages in South Africa over whether Eugene de Kock should ever be released from jail
Standing my ground: If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?

Standing my ground

If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?
Commonwealth Games 2014: Dai Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Welsh hurdler was World, European and Commonwealth champion, but then the injuries crept in
Israel-Gaza conflict: Secret report helps Israelis to hide facts

Patrick Cockburn: Secret report helps Israel to hide facts

The slickness of Israel's spokesmen is rooted in directions set down by pollster Frank Luntz
The man who dared to go on holiday

The man who dared to go on holiday

New York's mayor has taken a vacation - in a nation that has still to enforce paid leave, it caused quite a stir, reports Rupert Cornwell
Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business, from Sarah Millican to Marcus Brigstocke

Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business

For all those wanting to know how stand-ups keep standing, here are some of the best moments
The Guest List 2014: Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks

The Guest List 2014

Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks
Jokes on Hollywood: 'With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on'

Jokes on Hollywood

With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on
It's the best of British art... but not all is on display

It's the best of British art... but not all is on display

Voted for by the British public, the artworks on Art Everywhere posters may be the only place where they can be seen
Critic claims 'I was the inspiration for Blanche DuBois'

Critic claims 'I was the inspiration for Blanche DuBois'

Blanche Marvin reveals how Tennessee Williams used her name and an off-the-cuff remark to create an iconic character
Sometimes it's hard to be a literary novelist

Sometimes it's hard to be a literary novelist

Websites offering your ebooks for nothing is only the latest disrespect the modern writer is subjected to, says DJ Taylor
Edinburgh Fringe 2014: The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee

Edinburgh Fringe 2014

The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee
Dame Jenny Abramsky: 'We have to rethink. If not, museums and parks will close'

Dame Jenny Abramsky: 'We have to rethink. If not, museums and parks will close'

The woman stepping down as chair of the Heritage Lottery Fund is worried