Poll: BNP leader ‘lied’ over Holo­caust

The Jewish Chronicle - - Front Page - BY BARRY TOBER­MAN

MORE THAN TWO in three Bri­tons be­lieve Nick Grif­fin is a Holo­caust de­nier de­spite the BNP leader’s claim to the con­trary dur­ing his con­tro­ver­sial Ques­tion Time ap­pear­ance.

In a poll con­ducted ex­clu­sively for the JC by YouGov this week, 1,409 adults were asked if they were con­vinced by Grif­fin’s be­lated ac­cep­tance of the Holo­caust. Sixty-nine per cent re­sponded that “Grif­fin is still at heart a Holo­caust de­nier and only pre­tends to have changed his views to make the BNP ap­pear more moderate”.

Just 14 per cent agreed that Grif­fin now gen­uinely ac­knowl­edged that the Shoah did take place. Among Labour and LibDem vot­ers, four out of five said Grif­fin still de­nied the Holo­caust.

YouGov also asked whether Bri­tish Jews had “rea­son to be fear­ful if the BNP gained sig­nif­i­cantly in strength”. Fifty-four per cent re­sponded that Jews would have cause for fear — with the fig­ure ris­ing to 64 per cent among Lon­don­ers polled. Seventy-two per cent said Mus­lims should fear a more pow­er­ful BNP.

The re­sponses demon­strate that the BNP has failed to achieve the hoped-for bounce from Grif­fin’s slot on Ques­tion Time, which at­tracted a record eight mil­lion view­ers.

YouGov pres­i­dent Peter Kell­ner was sur­prised that “such a big ma­jor­ity thought Grif­fin was still a Holo­caust de­nier”. It showed that at­tempts to con­vince vot­ers that he be­lieved in the Holo­caust, and was a friend of Is­rael, had failed. “How­ever, a lot of peo­ple still sup­port what the BNP stands for.” If its sup­port reached 10 per cent, it could be­come a se­ri­ous and di­vi­sive po­lit­i­cal force.

In an ear­lier poll for the Daily Tele­graph, YouGov found that 66 per cent of Bri­tons would not un­der any cir­cum­stances con­sider vot­ing BNP in a lo­cal, gen­eral or Euro­pean elec­tion. Only four per cent would “def­i­nitely con­sider vot­ing BNP”.

Asked for their views on a va­ri­ety of fringe par­ties, 71 per cent ex­pressed neg­a­tive opin­ions about the BNP, as op­posed to two per cent who were “very pos­i­tive” and seven per cent who were “fairly pos­i­tive”.

Com­mu­nity and an­tiracist leaders were split over the im­pact made by Grif­fin on Ques­tion Time. Vet­eran an­tifas­cist Gerry Gable said it had served to wake up the many who might have been per­suaded that the BNP had re­formed.

Holo­caust Ed­u­ca­tional Trust chair­man Lord Jan­ner felt Grif­fin had come across badly, “but the fact of his ap­pear­ance has given sta­tus to the BNP, which in the long run could do great harm to the Jewish and other mi­nor­ity com­mu­ni­ties”.

Jewish Coun­cil for Racial Equal­ity di­rec­tor Dr Edie Fried­man said “Grif­fin’s com­ment about the BNP sup­port­ing Is­raeli ac­tions in Gaza was a sin­is­ter at­tempt to demon­strate pro-Jewish and anti-Mus­lim cre­den­tials.”

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