Brendan Cox - widower of murdered MP Jo Cox - in plea for 'respectful not divisive' election campaign

Mark Chandler
Plea: Brendan Cox: Neil Hall/Reuters

The widower of murdered MP Jo Cox has pleaded for politicians to conduct a "respectful not divisive" election campaign and take on the "haters".

Brendan Cox, whose wife was stabbed and shot by a right-wing extremist days before the EU referendum, said he welcomed a "robust debate" but urged people to give "short shrift to the haters".

The campaigner has planned a community event called the Great Get Together for June 16, the anniversary of his wife's death and just eight days after the election.

He said: "We've got a proud tradition of vigorous debate in this country.

"We can have strong opinions, big disagreements, but we can still respect those who take a different view.

"I welcome a robust debate, we should also give short shrift to the haters and drive them to margins where they belong.

"I hope we'll have an election that's respectful not divisive."

Mother-of-two Mrs Cox, 41, was shot and stabbed by neo-Nazi Thomas Mair in her Batley and Spen constituency. He was later handed a whole-life prison sentence for her murder.

Her widower referenced a recent viral video showing Brenda from Bristol, who professed her weariness at having another election in a BBC News vox pop.

He said: "Brenda from Bristol captured the feelings of many when she told the BBC 'Not another one!'

"Brenda said there was 'too much politics'. I would say there is too much bitterness and hatred.

"We've seen it growing for a long time but it's not the British way."

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