Jo Cox tribute

Minutes after news emerged that Jo Cox MP had been shot and stabbed by a man yesterday, there were reports that the gunman shouted “Britain first”.

With police investigating the suspect’s links to far-right groups, attention inevitably turned to the political party of that name.

At 5:09pm yesterday Britain First released a video statement from their leader Paul Golding. They strongly denied any links to the incident or the alleged attacker and have cast doubt on whether those words would refer to their organisation:

“At the moment we do not know what was said [during the attack]. Nothing’s been confirmed. No one’s been named. There’s been no eyewitness accounts published in the media. At the moment it is pure heresay … There’s no evidence that ‘Britain First’ was shouted.”


So what do we know seventeen hours later?

Several bystanders have repeated the claim to media outlets, the Guardian citing “at least two witnesses”, naming one of them:

Graeme Howard, 38, was among at least two witnesses who stated that Mair was shouting “Britain first” as he carried out the attack. The police later confirmed they were investigating the motive.

The Telegraph named another witness, gas engineer Clarke Rothwell, who said the same:

After he shot her the first time at pretty much point black range he shot her the second  time whilst she was lying on the ground.

All the time as he was reloading he was stabbing her again and again on the ground in her body and shouting ‘Britain first! Britain first! Britain First’. He was shouting ‘Britain first!’ again and again as he stabbed her again and again.

While full details of this outrage are yet to emerge, a debate on the tone of political rhetoric in our country has already begun in earnest.

  1. Of course they deny it….having a facebook page that continually advocates violence, civil war and “they have it coming for them” leads people that access their echo chamber to believe it all….no, they didn’t physically kill Jo, but they certainly sent the killer….RIP Jo..xx

  2. Murray Futterman says:

    The refrain that keeps being repeated in social media comments is that the only person who said the attacker shouted “Britain First” was an “Asian shopkeeper” and that he wasn’t actually there at the time but rather told by someone else, and that other witnesses have denied it. I assume this is misinformation being spread by right-wing bigots.

  3. I suspect that ‘Britain First’ relates to an idea espoused by many Brexit spokespeople during the EU referendum campaign and not specifically to the political party Britain First – although they support, and proclaim, that sentiment. That it is being challenged by many is also to be expected as they won’t want their Brexit stance tainted by this senseless violence. When you stir the hornets nest you cannot control who will be stung.

  4. Britain first are to be compaired to ISIS,if they are not stopped now they will spread their evil web across the Uk. Emotions are running high at the moment regarding the referendum and I pray to god that people will see sense before the uk is ruled by Ukip and Britain First.

  5. Don Tweedale says:

    Dirty horrible bastards, using this woman’s death as a political means against the leave campaign , hang your heads in shame !!

  6. If this is true how did he manage to reload and at same “time stab her all the time he was reloading ” surely he only had 2 hands

  7. @ Don Tweedale

    Dirtry horrible bastard trying to gloss over the murder of a politician because it’s inconvinient to your narrative!

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