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Picture 12 The Lib Dems' claim to be all sweetness and light when it comes to electioneering have long been in doubt. The party's own campaign manual states that positive campaigning is not enough to win elections and that candidates should "be wicked, act shamelessly, stir endlessly."

And over the Christmas period, the antics of Greg Stone, the Lib Dem candidate for Newcastle East, have been brought to national prominence.

As reported in the Telegraph, Stone has been using a pseudonym to post disparaging comments of an extremely personal nature about a series of Conservative and Labour MPs on the Guido Fawkes blog.

The Conservative candidate for Newcastle East, Dominic Llewellyn, condemned Stone in an open letter on his blog:

"I am standing for Parliament because I care deeply about the city and the nation we both live in. Far from engaging people in a positive vision of how you want to change this country for the better, your comments were sexually gratuitous at times and outrageously rude at others. They are precisely the type of comments which turn people off politics and they do not represent the values which I stand for: personal freedom, a commitment to the environment and a desire to protect the most vulnerable at home and abroad."

Stone has since been forced to apologise for his remarks and his comments have also been condemned by the Lib Dem leader of Newcastle Council as "entirely inappropriate".

Jonathan Isaby

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