Doncaster Labour councillor defends 'Tory filth' comments on Facebook post
A Doncaster Labour councillor has sparked anger after describing the Conservative-run government as ‘Tory filth’ on social media but said she ‘stands by’ her words.
Coun Leanne Hempshall, who was elected earlier this year in May to the Roman Ridge ward, made the comments on Facebook in a discussion about different factions of the Labour party.
In responding to a post calling for unity in the party, she posted: “I don’t want to lose the left in the party, we just need to join and work together rather than apart.
“Let’s get this Tory filth out of government together! If we don’t soon, I can’t bear to think about what this country will become!”
Coun Hempshall was criticised by Conservative councillors on DMBC who said the comments ‘have no place in local politics’.
But when asked to comment, Coun Hempshall said: “I stand by my comments and I will always speak out for the people of Doncaster. ”
In the wider Facebook post, The Roman Ridge councillor said she went from ‘loving to hating’ former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and that the party’s position on Brexit in the past had been ‘embarrassing’.
It’s understood the conversation was about the recent Budget announcement from Chancellor Rishi Sunak.
Coun Jane Cox, Conservative group leader on DMBC, said: “Comments such as these have no place in local politics. We are all doing our best to serve Doncaster.
“It feels there is an unsavoury undercurrent through the politics of Doncaster. It isn’t right to bully people because they are Tory.
“I had hoped, after the last election, that we had moved away from this spiteful politics of old.
“The local Labour Party shouldn’t promote this kind of rhetoric. Here in Doncaster Conservatives we feel people are entitled to their opinions but resorting to uncouth comments is not necessary.
“There’s an issue with immaturity here and it seems some Labour councillors need to learn how to conduct themselves in a professional way.”
Coun Hempshall said: “I was extremely offended by the Chancellor’s complete disregard for struggling working class people such as many in my community. He did nothing to address the poverty faced this winter that will directly affect Doncaster.
“People will need to, quite literally choose between heating and eating in Doncaster, and all the Chancellor concerns himself with is cutting tax on champagne and internal flights – this was just a week before COP26.
“I stand by my comments and I will always speak out for the people of Doncaster.”