Lennon admits to 40% donations decline after HOPE not hate campaign
Stephen Lennon’s planned US trip, an expected money-maker, has been blocked following a campaign by HOPE not hate, backed from MPs across the political spectrum. Stephen Yaxley-Lennon (AKA Tommy Robinson) whined to supporters that the HOPE not hate campaign had led to a slump in donations, telling them: “I don’t know how we’re gonna continue”
On 28 October analysis by HOPE not hate indicated the strong likelihood of Lennon receiving a financial boost in the region of £1,000,000 if he were to be successful in embarking on his US speaking tour this month.
In a recent livestream to his supporters Lennon, who only last week was permanently banned from PayPal, revealed his further financial woes.
“Who says I’m gonna make a million pound? HOPE not hate […] their job is to stop me, that’s it, that’s their job, to stop me […] Now does that have an effect? Yes it does. ‘Cus my, I have subscribers who subscribe monthly, I’ve watched a 40% decline, I’m already sitting here thinking ‘I don’t know how we’re going to continue’.”
US Trip blocked
Stephen Lennon’s planned trip to the US, at the invitation of anti-Muslim think tanks and rightwing Members of Congress, is off, according to media reports.
Despite Lennon’s self-aggrandising claims – HOPE not hate does a lot more than focus on him – we have indeed campaigned to prevent his trip to the States. After a launching an effort to raise awareness of Lennon’s criminal record, HOPE not hate worked with Ruth Smeeth MP’s office to organise a letter from a cross-party group of over 50 MPs to the US State Department, asking that they refuse his entry.
The Gateway Pundit, a far-right alternative media site, gave the most recent indication that Lennon had been refused entry. They reported on 9 November that he had told them he would now be “appearing via Skype” since “he has accepted an invitation to go to Australia for ten days and does not want to be away from his family for too long”. Nonetheless, Lennon suggested he still planned to go to the States in the future as he has “so many people [he] would like to thank [there]”.
At the time of writing the State Department still has not officially commented on whether he has been granted entry but it is all but certain that his trip has been blocked, for now.
Lennon was due to visit the States from 14-21 November to speak on two occasions. One on the invite of key Islamophobic ‘Counter-Jihad’ organisations, the Middle East Forum and the David Horowitz Foundation, and another by Republican Congressman Paul Gosar and 6 other members of Congress, to speak at the Conservative Opportunity Society in a closed-door event.
Such high-profile support is precisely why we estimated Lennon would see additional money flow into campaigns if he were to be allowed to enter the US. His criminal record should bar his entry, though there is reason to think he may be successful in the future, not least given the support the Trump administration has shown to Lennon and the ties it has to organisations of the very ilk which are attempting to bring Lennon over.
Lennon has received support from Islamophobic backers in the US before and our concern is his financial windfalls from this trip could aide his planned tour of the UK next summer. Lennon announced these intentions outside the Old Bailey in London on 24 October following a contempt of court retrial, telling a crowd of supporters that he would be travelling the country to talk about “the true extent of the rape of Britain”, an effort that would undoubtedly sow division and anti-Muslim hatred, something Lennon has done throughout his political career.