The Monster Raving Loony Party is in the midst of a funding crisis after losing its main financial backer, its party leader told BuzzFeed.
Until recently bookmaker William Hill covered many of the costs associated with the spoof political party, which has been a perennial feature of British electoral life since the 1960s. But this has since changed.
“William Hill have been with us for 20-odd years but the board has changed and they’ve got some other ideas, so Eastleigh was the last by-election they sponsored us at,” party leader Howling Laud Hope explained at the count for the Newark by-election.
“The party’s paid for tonight [at the by-election] ourselves,” he said. “But we’d like a sponsor, we really would. We’ve got a couple in mind but no one’s stepped forward and said they’ll take it on.”
Sponsors are expected to cover the £500 it costs to stand a Monster Raving Loony candidate for election. In return the candidate is expected to ensure they receive more than 100 votes in order to keep party standards high.
“Anybody with a sense of humour is welcome,” said Hope, who was accompanying his party’s candidate Nick the Flying Brick to the count. “We do it for the hell of it. We are part of the British constitution, it wouldn’t be the same without us.”
The Monster Raving Loony party finished in seventh place in Thursday’s Newark by-election with 168 votes. The Loonies were only 840 votes behind the Liberal Democrats, who finished sixth.