Hull Labour councillor pledges: “500 Twitter followers and I’ll punch a Lib Dem”

The Hull Daily Mail reports:

A TWITTER row has broken out after a Hull City councillor tweeted he would “punch a Lib Dem in the face” if he reached 500 followers. Labour councillor Chris Sumpton claims the tweet was only meant as a joke but his Liberal Democrat colleagues are furious and are considering taking the matter further.

The issue was raised at yesterday’s full council meeting when an angry Councillor Eliza Mann asked council leader Stephen Brady to condemn the tweet.

But the leader said he couldn’t comment because he wasn’t in possession of the full facts and wasn’t familiar with the social networking site.

Afterwards, Cllr Mann said: “It was a really nasty thing to find.

“I think the tweet was beyond naivety. It’s bad enough he tweeted it but he did it in a public setting as a councillor.

“It’s 2013 and everyone should know how to use social media and be aware of its pitfalls.” …

[Cllr Sumpton said:] “I will take care with all future social media postings, particularly those that may contain humour.”

Ah, banter, eh? Chris Sumpton’s tweets – @SummoTCB – are now protected. Maybe David Cameron had a point after all, about what too many tweets might make

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  • Standards committee here we come…

  • It speaks volumes about a social medi platform and about the real instincts of too much of the Labour Party.

  • In case anyone is wondering about the “…” in that quotation above, here are some of the bits that were edited out:
    “Cllr Sumpton, who recently fought in a charity boxing match at the KC Stadium to raise funds for children’s charities, maintains the tweet was meant in jest.
    He said: “This was clearly a joke and was never intended to cause any offence.
    “I am now at 500 followers and no Lib Dem has been punched nor will they be. There was never any intention to do so. The thought that anybody could take this seriously shocks me.”
    He also criticised the Lib Dems for making so much of the tweet.
    He said: “I am surprised at how much energy the Liberal Democrats have put into this matter.
    “I would much prefer their energies go into stopping their party imposing savage cuts of £48m on the people of Hull.”

    I really think you might have mentioned that the remark was connected to a charity boxing match. But still.

  • @ Gareth Epps

    I totally agree. The level of violent and abusive language posted, for example, in Guardian comments towards the Liberal Democrats in general and Nick Clegg in particular is indicative of a real pathological state among Labour supporters.

    The words totalitarian, aggressive and anti-democratic come to mind.

  • As for Chris Sumpton dismissing it as “humour”, if that’s what passes for humour in the Labour party these days, I pity its members.

  • David White 23rd Nov '13 - 9:51am

    Here in The City of Culture, Cllr Sumpton is widely known to be a fundamental orifice.

  • I remember a Lib Dem who contributes and posts on here saying he would ‘break the back’ of any dog if a voter set one on him when he was canvassing. He came out with that in response to a comment on the Guardian’s Cif.
    If I had the time today I could go back in his profile on Cif and find the comment [presuming it wasn’t moderated later].

    Should I have reported him to the RSPCA for threatening violence to animals ?

    Was that what passes these days as Lib Dem humour ?

    Does it indicate a pthologically violent state amongst Lib Dems ?

    Ridiculous to suggest that ? But all points made about Labour supporters above.

  • John Heyworth 23rd Nov '13 - 10:00am

    Hull – City of Culture? With people like him in control it should be City Of Ignorence!

  • jedibeeftrix 23rd Nov '13 - 10:11am

    Chris – agreed.

  • No idea what his politics are and only once ever been to Hull, but hats off to the fell for the charity boxing match to raise funds for children’s charities. As for the pointless jabs about Standards Committee, level of violent and abusive language, and digs at about culture, this just makes people sit back and laugh at the pettiness of it all. Come on, man up and take it on the chin. Have you not got more important things to talk about.

  • Richard Dean 23rd Nov '13 - 1:03pm

    It speaks volumes about the LibDems that they have to make so much of what was obviously a joke inspired by a sporting event. Have the LibDems really got nothing to say on the issues of the day? Some of the things that LDV seems to have missed include

    > arms sales to Sri Lanka
    > a nuclear Iran
    > slavery in London
    > electoral fraud,
    > Greenpeace in Russia
    > further curs to student grants
    > the CAR
    > interns dying
    > Syria and jihadists

    Could I recommend today’s Guardian?

  • Tony Greaves 23rd Nov '13 - 1:13pm

    “The words totalitarian, aggressive and anti-democratic come to mind.” In relation to the Labour Party? Surely not??!!

    As for electoral fraud (1) all parties have been implicated in third world style Client Politics in different places (notoriously in relation to absent voting but it’s more than that) but it’s the Labour Party that is deepest in the mire. (2) I was raising this in the House of Lords ten years ago when few others knew enough or wished to or dared to and have been raising it from time to time ever since. (3) It’s taken ten years for the Electoral Commission to (possibly) take it seriously.


  • Tony Greaves 23rd Nov '13 - 1:14pm

    As for Twitter I say again – Twitter and polticians do not mix and should be kept apart.


  • Richard Dean 23rd Nov '13 - 1:29pm

    Let’s stay firmly in the ancient past, eh, Tony?

  • Richard Dean 23rd Nov '13 - 8:52pm

    Thanks, I already do, it’s helpful to see a range of views, as you indicate, including French and other titles. My point was simply that this particular boxing story is not that significant compared to the many issues that LDV seems to miss.

  • Richard Dean 23rd Nov '13 - 9:48pm

    Gee, Simon, no-one could mistake LDV for a news site!

  • “From what you say the remark WASN’T connected to a charity boxing match.”

    If you read the newspaper report that was the basis of the article above, you will know perfectly well that the author of that article did connect the remark made by Mr Sumpton with the charity boxing match – to the extent of heading the said article with a photo of Mr Sumpton at the said boxing match.

    If you have evidence that the newspaper report was wrong to make that connection, I suggest you tell us what it is.

  • Richard Dean 24th Nov '13 - 11:47am

    @Simon. Did you not notice that all the stories I listed have political issues associated with them, issues on which LibDems need to have opinions? Are LibDems happy about arms sales to a Sri Lankan government that is accused by some of war crimes? Id politics relevant to what Greenpeace is doing, given that its founder thinks its gone awol? Is the Russian reaction, including putting people in solitary confinement, not something that bothers you? Have student grants simply disappeared from the LibDem consciousness?

  • Richard Dean 24th Nov '13 - 12:51pm

    @Simon. Any chance of ending this silly spat? LDV could improve a lot if it carried articles discussing political aspects of current affairs that are more current than what they cover at present. All that’s needed is a bit of looking up and outwards.

  • Leekliberal 24th Nov '13 - 7:04pm

    Very much in the Hull style of punchy debate inspired by brawler and Labour’s Deputy Leader, Prescott!

  • Richard Dean 24th Nov '13 - 9:38pm

    All in the spirit of friendly fun, with a bonus of a serious aspect too !:-)

  • David Allen 24th Nov '13 - 9:59pm

    Richard Dean,

    “@Simon. Any chance of ending this silly spat?”

    With Simon, there’s about as much chance as the Pope abandoning Catholicism, I’m afraid….

  • “You seem very irritated that a fact absent from the newspaper article isn’t included here.”

    No, Joe, I’m not “irritated”. I just feel that the anonymous author of the article above might, in the interests of accuracy, have mentioned the fact that Mr Sumpton had recently taken place in a charity boxing match, and that the author of the article quoted above clearly felt that there was a connection between that and the remark made – to the extent, as I said, of heading the article with a photo of him taking part in that charity boxing match.

    After all, that article in the Hull Daily Mail seems to be LDV’s sole authority for the story. So what’s the basis for suppressing a connection that was clearly made by the author of the article? Just in the interests of all the facts being made available to the readership. Or is that now a controversial concept as far as LDV is concerned?

  • Matthew Huntbach 28th Nov '13 - 10:50am

    Richard Dean

    Let’s stay firmly in the ancient past, eh, Tony?

    What do you mean by this? The idea that we should all be compelled to accept whatever is deemed “modern” is profoundly illiberal. What is deemed “modern” is often what is being forced on us by the elite who use the line “you must accept it because it is modern” when they have run out of other arguments.

    If you mean Tony’s point about Twitter, I agree with Tony. I hate the way we are all being compelled to use these proprietary systems whose main aim is actually to collect information on us so they can send us adverts. I don’t see the point of Twitter – so far as I can see, it’s just a system for getting more junk electronic communication sent to you, why on earth should I sign up for that? I don’t see the point of Facebook, it seems to be just a template for setting up your own web page, but I don’t need that, if I wanted to set up a web page I can buy web space, and not have it under this proprietary format. As someone who was using the ancestors of today’s “social media” in the early 1980s, I don’t like the way Facebook seems to be trying to take over and become a privately-controlled web, with all of us forced to use it instead of the open web because it has been pushed by fools who say “you must use it because it’s modern” into being used for what was once done just using the web.

    If you mean Tony’s point about electoral fraud, well, yes I too was arguing ten years ago about the danger of it, and the the New Labour councillors I was arguing with as a LibDem councillor in a New Labour “flagship” borough mocked me as being old-fashioned and “Luddite” because I was concerned about the dangers involved in moving to electronic voting. I am actually a university lecturer in Computer Science, and EVERY academic in my field I have talked about over this thinks the same as I do on this issue – we know how computer systems are vulnerable in so many ways, that is why we can see voting MUST be done by paper ballot, which is visible and trackable throughout.

  • Richard Underhill 1st Oct '16 - 11:40am

    The death of Scottish boxer Mike Towell in hospital after being seriously injured in a bout on Thursday is further evidence that boxing is not a sport. It is legalised fighting. Unlike sports the intention in boxing is to harm an opponent. In sports harming an opponent is either an accident or foul play.

  • Richard Underhill 1st Oct '16 - 12:21pm

    Prisoners with violent pasts wishing to be released as soon as possible would apply for a transfer to Grendon. There were more applications than places. Grendon’s policy of no violence at all included threats. The lightest of touches would cause an immediate transfer out of Grendon to another prison.

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