Over 200,000 sign petition telling May to sack Toby Young. He’s got to go

And a former Labour MP, thought to be the subject of one of Young's misogynist tweets, said he should go "immediately".

Theresa May swam against a growing tide yesterday, saying she refuses to sack Toby Young despite his past offensive and misogynistic comments. Nearly a quarter of a million people, and growing, disagree with her though.

More than 210,000 people have signed a petition demanding that Theresa May sack Toby Young from the universities regulator over offensive tweets.

Pamela Nash, a former Labour MP, thought to be the subject of one of Young’s offensive tweets, also called for the former journalist’s resignation yesterday.

Nash said Young should be sacked “immediately” it was “beyond belief” that he’d been appointed to the board of the Office for Students in the first place.

Young tweeted during prime minister’s questions in 2012: “Serious cleavage behind @Ed_Miliband’s head. Anyone know who it belongs to?” — it’s thought Young was referring to Nash, who commented yesterday:

“It is beyond belief that he has been appointed to the board of the Office of Students when he thinks so little of the majority of those who seek a university education.”

Other comments made in public by Young include calling state school students at Oxford and Cambridge “stains” and calling children with learning difficulties “illiterate troglodytes”.

“Young is entirely unqualified for this position and was appointed because of his public support in the press for Theresa May’s administration”, reads the petition signed by nearly a quarter of a million people. It continues:

“To show the government is not entirely out-of-touch with public opinion, we demand Toby Young is sacked immediately from this post and someone much more appropriate given the position instead.”

The Prime Minister told Andrew Marr yesterday that she’d sack Young if he made similar comments again:

“He’s now in public office and as far as I’m concerned if he was to continue to use that sort of language and talk in that sort of way he would no longer be in public office.”

It’s hard to think of another public figure given such carte blanche on their past behaviour — and the public clearly aren’t buying it. This refusal to sack Young will cost May in the long run as public outrage continues to mount.

You can sign the petition demanding Young’s resignation here.

Like this article? Sign up to Left Foot Forward's weekday email for the latest progressive news and comment - and support campaigning journalism by becoming a Left Foot Forward Supporter today.