The issue of what to do about Godfrey Bloom, the Yorkshire MEP for the UK Independence Party was raised by Cork MEP Kathy Sinnott at a meeting of the political group to which they both belong. Mr Bloom, who wants to campaign against women receiving paid maternity rights, became a substitute member on the women’s committee because nobody else wanted the post.
But now the group has agreed to ask him to step down and Ms Sinnott said she will take up the seat herself if nobody else is interested.
“We cannot tolerate a situation like this,” said Ms Sinnott.
The group, Independence/Democracy with 33 members, is to investigate Mr Bloom’s comments to see if they breach the party rules against discrimination. All the members, including the 12 UKiP members, signed a declaration when joining the group saying they would not make discriminatory statements.
“We agreed that anybody doing so would automatically disqualify themselves from party membership,” said Ms Sinnott.
They agreed to begin an investigation of what exactly Mr Bloom said to the media and judge for themselves if it was discriminatory against women.
“None of this is negotiable. If he is found to have broken the rule, he must go,” said Ms Sinnott.