Paul Nuttall didn’t lose ‘close personal friends’ at Hillsborough – but won’t admit he lied about it

What other 'alternative facts' has Nuttall put out there?

 

It’s not often that a Ukipper admits to being wrong, but today party leader Paul Nuttall has acknowledged that the claim that he lost ‘close personal friends’ at Hillsborough was false.

He maintains he was at the stadium in Sheffield that day, although some have questioned that too.

Speaking to Liverpool’s Radio City Talk, Nuttall acknowledged that the claim was ‘wrong’ but, extraordinarily, denied that it had come from him.

Presented with a printout from his own website Nuttall said:

“That’s not from me I’m sorry. I haven’t lost anyone who is a close personal friend. It was people I knew through football. That is something I haven’t put out. It is wrong.”

So who did put it out then? And why did Nuttall feign surprise and insist on examining the paper himself, when this story has been in the headlines for days?

This is the performance of a schoolchild who’s been caught in a lie but sticks with it anyway no matter what evidence the teacher produces. Which is pretty funny, but also not funny at all.

Not only is it cheap and offensive to use the tragedy for political gain, it’s also one in a series of lies that, taken individually, seem fairly innocuous.

Nuttall has falsely claimed to have a PhD from Liverpool Hope University and to have played professional football for Tranmere Rovers. In both cases, he blamed members of his staff for the ‘errors’, and we can expect the same to happen this time around.

But these lies shouldn’t be taken lightly. As we’ve seen in the US in recent weeks, embarrassing self-aggrandising lies — regarding the size of an inauguration crowd, for example — should set off alarm bells. Politicians who tell casual, seemingly insignificant lies, are evincing a broader disregard for the truth.

So, besides Hillsborough, his PhD and his football career, what else is the UKIP leader lying about?

Niamh Ní Mhaoileoin is editor of Left Foot Forward. Follow her on Twitter

See: Fake News: Leave.EU publishes junk poll calling Stoke by-election for UKIP

See: Does Paul Nuttall think abortion doctors should face the death penalty?

5 Responses to “Paul Nuttall didn’t lose ‘close personal friends’ at Hillsborough – but won’t admit he lied about it”

  1. leigh richards

    Given these series of admissions – admissions which had to be dragged out of him – can we now be sure his claim that he was at hillsborough is true?

  2. Mike Stallard

    What do UKIP stand for? What are their plans for a fairer country? What are their plans for leaving the EU? Will they join EFTA? Do they support Grammar Schools? Roger Helmer has some pretty fixed ideas on AGW, but do the rest of UKIP agree with him? And if they do?
    https://rogerhelmermep.wordpress.com/2017/02/01/11956/

    This is what we should be discussing, not bitching about Hillsborough which is now history to most people outside Liverpool.

  3. DaveC

    Nuttall said in a BBC interview in 2011(?) that he had lost a personal friend at Hillsborough, the blog Sqwalkbox has the details

  4. Arron Banks is 'sick to death' of hearing about Hillsborough | Left Foot Forward

    […] donor has decided that the best way to contain the Paul Nuttall Hillsborough story is to claim that Hillsborough doesn’t matter […]

  5. Chris Kitcher

    Lets get this odious individual out of the limelight.

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