Ex-News of the World journalist Paul McMullan stands as independent candidate in Dover
by political editor Paul Francis
Former News of the World journalist Paul McMullan is no longer
standing for UKIP in the county council election next week.
Mr McMullan had declared he would be contesting one of the 84
seats up for grabs for the party, but is now standing instead as an
independent for a seat in Dover currently held by Labour.
And it is tax-free beer rather than doing away with meddling EU
bureaucrats that is the cornerstone of his new independent
The former tabloid journalist (pictured right) was among those
who gave evidence to the Leveson Inquiry on phone-hacking
allegations and offered a strong defended the practice.
Now the landlord of the Castle Inn, in Dover, is running for
election under the banner of "Save Village Pubs", a pledge to axe
tax from beers that contain four per cent alcohol or less.
Mr McMullan did not get the backing he needed to stand as a UKIP
candidate from party managers.
It is understood they felt his presence could be a distraction
from the party's other candidates.Mr McMullan, 45, had initially said he was
inspired to put himself forward as a UKIP candidate after
watching Diane James, the UKIP candidate who beat the Tory
candidate in the Eastleigh by-election, when she appeared on the
BBC television programme Question Time.
But it seems his new-found affection for UKIP was not
reciprocated by party officials, who contend they could be poised
to make a breakthrough in Kent at next week's poll.
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