Stockport Liberal Democrats have called for the resignation of a senior Labour councillor after she was forced to apologise for using “abusive” language on social media. Cllr Kate Butler, the cabinet member responsible for Economy and Regeneration at the Town Hall, was formally rebuked by Council bosses who said “the language used was abusive and can reasonably be regarded as bringing the office of councillor into disrepute”.
Cllr Butler was alleged to have referred to a representative of various community groups a “sock puppet w*****”.
Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group at Stockport, Cllr Mark Hunter, said “There’s simply no excuse for this kind of behaviour and it is plain wrong that the Labour leadership of the Council continues to support this member on its front bench. Cllr Butler has been found guilty of breaching the councillors’ code of conduct on two counts and should be relieved of her duties forthwith.
“The fact that this incident happened several months ago and the complaint has only come to light because of this week’s report by the Manchester Evening News is simply wrong – councillors and local people would otherwise have been kept completely in the dark.
“Having been reprimanded officially by the Council, Kate Butler should have done the decent thing and offered her resignation, but to continue to be backed by the Labour leadership and keep her front bench position just demonstrates the contempt some Labour politicians have for the general public.”
Cllr Lisa Smart, Deputy Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group added ” Residents are right to expect the very highest standards of behaviour from the people they elect to represent them. I just don’t see how Cllr Butler can bring the community together to make the most of the ongoing investment projects given her past behaviour. For that reason, we are calling on her to resign from her role on the Labour Cabinet with immediate effect and allow someone else to take these projects forward.”