A councillor has joined the openly-racist National Front, giving the far-right party its first elected representative for 35 years.
John Gamble was elected as a Rotherham BNP councillor in 2008, beating Mayor Allan Jackson by 61 votes but defected to the English First Party last June.
He told The Star he had 'jumped ship' to the NF because he wanted to join a 'more active' organisation.
But when some of the NF's recorded views were put to him, the Catcliffe and Brinsworth councillor said: "You have caught me somewhat flat-footed.
"I am not aware of the severity of these opinions."
He added: "I am not racist, but on the far right," he told The Star. "How can I be racist when I have had several coloured girlfriends?
"I am concerned about immigration levels and want to continue to be a useful member of the community."
Rother Valley MP Kevin Barron said: "John Gamble was elected under the banner of one disgusting organisation, and he has moved to one that is even worse."
Rotherham MP Denis MacShane said: "The National Front is no different to the BNP as a racist party which fosters hate and violence."
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