Lib Dems drop 'anti-Semitic' candidate David Ward

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Theresa May criticised Farron during PMQs today after David Ward was selected to fight Bradford East - the seat he previously held from 2010 until 2015.

In an interview with the BBC on Tuesday, Mr Farron said: "I don't believe that gay sex is a sin".

Mr Farron denounced former MP David Ward as "unfit to represent the party" and reversed a decision to let him stand for the party on June 8 in his old constituency of Bradford East.

Farron had initially resisted calls to axe Ward, saying on Wednesday morning that while he disagreed with Ward's views, "it is not the job of the leader to impose who is and who isn't the candidate".

In 2013, Ward was criticised for accusing "the Jews" in Israel of "inflicting atrocities on Palestinians. on a daily basis".

Mr Farron said the party was on course to record its highest ever membership, surpassing the 101,768 in 1994.

A Lib Dem source said the power to sack a candidate had never been used by a party leader before.

"David Ward has been disciplined in the past and if he or anyone else makes antisemitic remarks in this campaign I will expect the party to act quickly and decisively, as we did when we suspended a candidate in Luton South yesterday". Mr Ward's views are offensive, and he has been an unrepentant serial offender.

Asked if his party would prop up a minority government, Mr Farron said: "No, because what is very clear at this moment is that we have an official Opposition which has not been behaving like an alternative government but is not even behaving like an opposition".

Tim Farron's refusal to say that gay sex is not a sin is "pretty offensive" and will upset many people, MPs have said.

Sir Eric, a former leader of Bradford City Council who is quitting as an MP, said party leaders must do more than "pay lip service" to tackling anti-Semitism. "They put me through a process and concluded that I was not anti-Semitic". "It is important that all parties have a zero tolerance approach to anti-Semitism".

When questioned why it took him so long to answer, he replied: "I'm quite careful about how I talk about my faith..."

But he said it had become "an issue" and that he wanted the focus to be on the general election.

Mr Gove added: "I agree with Liz".

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