The Tories have pulled support from their Aberdeen North election candidate amid accusations of antisemitism and homophobia.
City councillor Ryan Houghton was suspended by the party last night and told he would receive no backing from Conservative HQ in the running of his campaign.
The Press and Journal understands the party took action against Mr Houghton after a number of comments made on internet blogs eight years ago surfaced once more.
Due to election laws, Mr Houghton will remain as the Conservative candidate on the ballot paper come December 12.
A spokesman for the Scottish Conservatives said: “The comments contained in these blogs are unacceptable and Mr Houghton has been suspended as a member of the Scottish Conservative party as a result.”
With his party suspension, it means he will now sit on Aberdeen City Council as an independent councillor.
The spokesman added: “The party has also withdrawn its support for his candidacy in Aberdeen North.
“The Scottish Conservatives deplore all forms of Islamophobia, homophobia and antisemitism.”
As I’m aware of an emerging story in The National tonight that takes a look comments out of context made over 7 years ago I wish to make the following statement: pic.twitter.com/5JCyp7C2s5
— Ryan Houghton for Aberdeen North (@RyanJHoughton) November 18, 2019
Mr Houghton, who is the vice-convener of Aberdeen City Council’s staff governance committee, has strongly refuted any accusations that he is antisemitic or homophobic.
In a statement he said: “These posts were made on private discussion forums about eight years ago.
“Much of this has been taken totally out of context. And I made very clear at the time that I was not defending the views of David Irving (a Holocaust denier) in any way.
“I do not hold, and have never held, antisemitic, racist or homophobic views. I would strongly refute any suggestion to the contrary.”
Mr Houghton, 28, was elected as a councillor in 2017 and previously worked for former Aberdeen South MP Ross Thomson.