Livingstone compares 'hell-bound' Johnson to Hitler
Published 19/08/2011 | 05:00
IN 'Dante's Inferno', the ninth and inner-most circle of hell is reserved for those who have committed vile acts of treachery against people who had reason to trust them, such as Cain and Judas Iscariot.
And into that same terrifying pit of fire will be cast those London voters who commit the unforgivable act next May of not voting to return their former mayor, Ken Livingstone, back into the office he loves.
At least, that is how things stand if you believe Mr Livingstone. The 66-year-old is living up to his reputation for unpredictability and a love of attention by threatening eternal damnation on residents of the capital who fail to give him their vote in his forthcoming showdown with Boris Johnson.
He also suggested that the mayoral contest between him and Mr Johnson would be the clearest choice between right and wrong since Winston Churchill took on the Third Reich.
"It is a simple choice between good and evil," Mr Livingstone said.
"I don't think it has been so clear since the great struggle between Churchill and Hitler.
"The people that don't vote for me will be weighed in the balance, come Judgment Day.
The Archangel Gabriel will say, 'You didn't vote for Ken Livingstone in 2012. Oh dear, burn forever. Your skin flayed for all eternity'."
Although Mr Livingstone was joking, his humour did not go down well on the Tory side. Officially, Boris Johnson and his team were ignoring the comments but others described them as divisive and claimed that they proved that Mr Livingstone is unfit for high office. "Comparing rival politicians to Hitler is in incredibly poor taste," said Gavin Barwell, the Tory MP, whose Croydon Central constituency was the scene of the worst of last week's rioting. "Even to joke that Londoners who don't vote for him will burn forever after everything we have been through is crass." (© Independent News Service)