Imagine if you actually thought that homophobia was exactly the same as hating Earl Grey. Because that's what UKIP MEP Roger Helmer seems to genuinely believe.
It all seemed to be going so worryingly well for UKIP, right? The polls showed that party leader Nigel Farage claimed a resounding victory over Nick Clegg in two televised debates. It seemed like their fusion of traditionally Tory Middle England values with working-class disaffection was winning them support nationwide.
But the mask is beginning to slip. UKIP MEP Roger Helmer has jumped on to the bigot bandwagon with the claim that homophobia is just the same as liking a different type of tea. "Different people may have different tastes,” he told the Sun. "You may tell me that you don’t like Earl Grey tea. That may be a minority view but you are entitled not to like it if you don’t like it."
The last time we checked, different types of tea haven't been historically oppressed and had their rights systematically denied by society. Because, you know, they're basically leaves inside a teabag and not sentient human beings.
In a statement on his website, Helmer says he is "deeply shocked" by today's story (so are we, Roger, so are we) but still sticks by his point, saying that it is "morally acceptable to prefer heterosexuality over homosexuality, or vice versa".
April has proved to be a terrible month for the party. Last week, a UKIP candidate called William Henwood tweeted that Lenny Henry should "go back to a black country" after the comedian criticised the lack of ethnic diversity in the creative industries. (Henry, for the record, is from Dudley.) The poster boy for UKIP's anti-EU campaign turned out to be an Irish migrant, Farage had to suspend another of their poster stars for racism. Most hilariously, their Common Sense tour bus got stuck underneath a railway bridge in Portsmouth.
Farage has not been let off the hook, either – he's still trying to explain a mystery £50,000 worth of EU funding that was allegedly been paid directly into his bank account, and why he has hired his German wife do be his PA on taxpayers' money, instead of hiring a British worker.
Basically we are now gazing into the political abyss, and the abyss is gazing into us.
Check out Nick Robinson grilling Nigel Farage over his German PA:
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