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Considering her record of behaviour, is anyone else surprised that the only reason Janice Atkinson has been suspended is her expenses?

According to the BBC, the MEP for the South East was due to contest the Folkestone and Hythe Parliamentary seat on May 7 – until the Sun newspaper revealed a possible expenses impropriety in which her chief of staff, Christine Hewitt, appeared to ask the manager of a restaurant in Margate, Kent, for an invoice for a much higher sum than the bill she had originally received, around the time of UKIP’s spring conference.

It is not known whether these actions were authorised by the candidate herself. If she is prevented from running for the seat, UKIP may have saved itself from scenes like this:

140518janiceatkinson

The party may also have saved itself the embarrassment of another televised faux pas (that’s your actual French) like the moment last year in which Ms Atkinson said that a UKIP supporter from Ramsgate was a “ting tong” (whatever that may be).

From the BBC report, it seems UKIP has already reached a conclusion about her behaviour: “A UKIP spokesman said the party was ‘incredibly disappointed’ with Ms Atkinson, who appeared to have ‘exercised extremely poor judgement’ and to ‘have acted in a way the party has never and would never condone’.”

Considering her record, one has to ask why it took the party so long to recognise this.

Follow me on Twitter: @MidWalesMike

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