Coffee House

Why Sajid Javid could end up at the top of the Tory tree

30 March 2014

Sajid Javid’s promotion to Culture Secretary will not surprise his many fans. And it underlines an advantage that the Conservative party has over Labour right now – the talent in its back benchers. The Tories, quite simply, have far more MPs who could be Prime Minister – thanks to the hugely successful recruitment process that David Cameron ran after becoming leader . One of them is Sajid Javid, who is interviewed by the Mail on Sunday today – this was done (as ever) months earlier by James Forsyth in the Spectator (his interview here). They’re both worth reading, as I suspect Javid is one of these guys we’ll be hearing a lot more from in coming years.

Javid’s father lived what Michael Howard called the “British dream“, coming to Britain from Pakistan with £1 to his name then working day and night to give his family better chance than he had.Screen Shot 2014-03-30 at 12.28.58This worked, and aged 25 his son Sajid was the youngest-ever vice-president of Chase Manhattan bank. He was comprehensive-educated and then went to Exeter University – worth noting because its alumni (Robert Halfon, David Burrowes, Tim Montgomerie) would become leading Tory reformers.


James ends his interview with Javid this way:-

He responds by musing about his retirement. He says that when he’s sitting on the ‘porch in a rocking chair’, he wants to know that he’s done everything he can ‘to try and help my country give those opportunities that I have had to other generations. Where that means I go between now and my late seventies, I don’t know. But that’s what I want to feel that I’ve achieved.’ In other words: he knows precisely where that means he needs to go, but is too savvy to say.

I doubt that Javid’s ambition is that of the stereotypical political schemer, who wants to get to No10 because this is the prize in the great game. To end up as a reforming minister who did help thousands of lower-income voters, like Michael Gove or Iain Duncan Smith, would probably satisfy Javid’s ambition. But the Mail on Sunday is certainly right that he’s someone to keep an eye on.

This was written on Sunday and updated with news of his promotion

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  • balance_and_reason

    Ahaa…..disagreement with the trite bbc line=bigot.

    (Bliar/ clown were Scottish)……they made no democratic promise for a number of their actions actually (open door immigration for one) but substantially their crimes were incompetence, one which long term residency does not cure.

    My point on Erdogen is he promised moderate reasonably secular government and then has immediately taken the country away from that to suit his electoral purposes…lying to remain in power. Your naivety to take people at their promises in politics probably is justification in removing your right to vote, should it be possible.

    I didn’t mention colour.That was your own racist instinct.

    I’ve never watched fox news, so I can’t comment on that.

  • balance_and_reason

    Without being bigoted, this country is a long way from being ready for a muslim PM. Its bad enough having socialists every now and then.

    • Adro

      Why would having a PM who is clearly in politics for the right reasons, and seems to be an effective politician, but happens to be Muslim, a bad thing? Without reasoned foundation, that is simply a bigoted comment, despite your attempt to claim otherwise.

      • balance_and_reason

        1/ clearly in politics for the right reasons….?? one name…Erdogen. Guess what , naive socialist, politicians have been known to lie, especially those with an agenda they don’t wish to own up to (Bliar /Clown)
        2/ This is a fundamentally christian country, which has left a largely positive imprint and we have largely managed to remove the baggage of religion from government, which is also a good thing. We do not need a young violent religion, in any form, residual or otherwise,connected with government here, least of all islam.
        3/Someone who is fundamentally rooted here with generations of interconnectedness with families going back in time is more likely to act in an altruistic manner for the country. A recent arrival without the baggage of obligation and connectedness might be open to other pressures, may have been lying about their overall intentions, may have obligations to oversea’s interests…..all these are only maybe’s but can you take a risk with a countries governance. Absolutely not…..plenty of equally good candidates elsewhere.

        This is not bigotry, it is reason, balance and reason.….

        • Adro

          Where to begin with your poorly written diatribe? Well, firstly it’s Erdogan, not erdogen. Secondly the actions of one leader of Turkey have about as much to do with Sajid Javid as baseball does with cricket – nothing. You also disprove your own argument – you claim that someone rooted here is more likely to do good for the country, then attack Blair and Brown. Or would you rather have them because you hate those you don’t consider British enough due to their creed or colour more?

          You are simply a bigot, and no amount of prevaricating around the issue will change that. You’re about as balanced and reasonable as Fox News.

  • davebush999

    Why do you keep deleting my comments? Javid is as slippery as an eel.

  • davebush999

    This article is a joke, right? Have you ever heard Javid interviewed by the likes of Iain Dale? Javid is slipperier than a barrel of greased snakes and never answers a question.

  • Frank

    Why not, ex-Deutsche Bank personnel are always so ethical.

  • Tony_E

    While what he says about opportunity is somewhat attractive, it should be asked of him ‘what have you done in government so far to achieve it?’

    So far, I don’t see a lot. So I think maybe he has some way to go before he has the experience necessary to be a party leader – one for the distant future maybe.

    I would rather that the Conservatives returned to respecting experience instead of chasing the Blairite rush to the ‘New Generation’. The small government, liberal economic wing of British politics which the Conservative party should represent, needs a much more experienced and wise leader.

    • Augustus

      Someone like Enoch Powell perhaps?

  • Daidragon

    I don’t like him. Smarmy, pin stripe wearing ex banker. Already far too many of them knocking about the Commons.

  • saffrin

    If the Conservative party choose Sajid Javid to replace Cameron post May 2015, they would have fundamentally failed to understand why they lost the 2015 General Election in the first place.

    • JoeDM

      I agree.

  • Matthew Blott

    Fraser Nelson often proudly boasts what an intelligent and thoughtful bunch Coffee Housers are so he might like to have a look and see what the most popular comment here is. Shamefully my criticism was removed.

  • Smithersjones2013

    he wants to know that he’s done everything he can ‘to try and help my
    country give those opportunities that I have had to other generations.

    And this is where Javid makes the classic mistake of politicians and demonstrates his arrogance. He should not be focussed on offering people his aspirations but fulfilling theirs. After all most people probably do not want his life (except perhaps his wealth) and the ones thing British governments are no longer doing is working to make us individually more prosperous…….

    • HookesLaw

      Rubbish; the phrase is saying he wants people to have opportunities – ie oopportunities to achive their asperations. As a conservative that is the cornerstone of my belief.

      Go on, try to invent something else to take issue with. What an endless trail of pathetic rubbish from the kippers.

      • the viceroy’s gin

        …the very last thing you are, lad, is a conservative.

        • Ooh!MePurse!

          The very last thing you are is interesting. Oh or original. Or amusing. Or relevant. Your constant use of the same phrases and ‘insults’ is as dull as ditchwater. If I was the viceroy I would pray my gin was poisoned.

          • the viceroy’s gin

            …sounds good, lad. You can skip over my posts and not miss anything. I’ll be heartbroken, of course.

  • Steven Barr

    Come off it Fraser. You and I both know why he was promoted and it has nothing to do with talent.

    • HookesLaw

      I doubt that Mr Nelson is the bigot you are.
      Presumbaly Deuch Bank were as derilict at promoting him to their board of directors.

      • Fraser Nelson

        Stunned at the bigotry below the line here. Worst ones have been deleted/

        • the viceroy’s gin

          Yes, you socialist Camerluvvies are good about censorship, aren’t you? It always seems to be about the preening with you.

          Maybe you should report them all to Mistress May, lad.

        • andagain

          You know, I used to consider myself a Conservative. Then I started reading the comment threads on Coffeehouse (and the Telegraph, before its paywall went up). Now I don’t.

          I am not saying the second sentence is the cause of the third, but it certainly had some effect.

          • Ian Walker

            I sincerely wish there were a credible alternative; a party that espoused market economics, small government and trusting people to make their own decisions, but without the baggage of the Conservative party,

        • Osmania

          Predictable though (sadly)

          I’m more stunned no one has commented on the article saying Mr Javid’s father ”came to Britain with 5 pounds from Bangladesh” — ok plenty of people have done that, but all the articles linked to say he is British Pakistani. ( Rushanawra Ali in East London on the other hand is a MP of British Bangladeshi background.)

          And yes, in 1961, Bangladesh was East Pakistan, but as far as I can tell, his father wasn’t from that part… this is the sort of slip that some people can get a bit touchy about – at the T20 World Cup in Bangladesh this month, the cricket board briefly proposed banning Bangladeshi fans from carrying Pakistani flags, until they thought better and did a u-turn.

        • Shoe On Head

          what you are witnessing is a lot of heads exploding.

  • Magnolia

    I agree about Mr Javid having potential. I always feel relaxed when he represents us on the TV or radio because he doesn’t make me squirm with embarrassment like so many of the others do. He never puts a foot wrong.
    There is another Tory back bencher who also came from a bit of a lowly start in life and who also went on to have a meteoric career in banking before becoming a highly respected and much revered MP and he also has considerable potential although he is almost never mentioned here and that MP is Mr John Redwood.
    Strange old world eh?

    • HookesLaw

      There are various conservatives who had a lowly start in life. Ted Heath was one (!) John Major. Ken Clarke’s father was a mining electrical engineer – a bit like my dad who worked as a fitter down the pit.
      But of course it does not matter where you started – if it did public schoolboy Michael Foot (father, partner in a law firm) would never have risen to lead the Labour Party – it matters where you end up.

      • the viceroy’s gin

        …well, in 13.25 months, your boy Dave’s head is going to end up on a spike, lad.

    • Adro

      Probably because Redwood doesn’t go down well with the public, primarily due to his baggage from the Major years.

  • Colonel Mustard

    We are in danger of stereotyping here, which the left do all the time but conservatives shouldn’t.

  • Right-Minded

    When he says ‘give the opportunities that I’ve had to others’, I get nervous; immigrants are already prioritised in this country.

    • telemachus

      What is most interesting about Javid is that he is yet another banker who has made his pile and wants a toy to play with to assuage the ennui of his heretofore life
      Politics not only needs to get away from insiders who have done nothing other than politics, it needs to get away from its unhealthy relations with the City

      • Ian Walker

        As opposed to socialists, who don’t have the nouse to earn it for themselves, so instead steal from taxpayers so that they can puff themselves up about helping others…with other people’s money.

        • telemachus

          The most successful pair Brown/Blair were college lecturer and barrister respectively

          • Ian Walker

            A pupil barrister who lost every case while telling Michael Foot that he “came to socialism throgh Marxism”, and a history student who invaded Afghanistan and allowed a credit-fuelled housing boom?

            I’ll take my chances with the other side, thanks.

          • saffrin

            Both of which duck their due taxes via dubious charities.

        • jaydeepee

          The very definition of a banker is to make money and a name for themselves with other people’s money, surely?

      • saffrin

        ‘Politics not only needs to get away from insiders who have done nothing other than politics, it needs to get away from its unhealthy relations with the City’
        So how come you support Miliband and why do you support a party that bailed out privately owned banks?
        Explain the social justice in financially supporting an industry that can afford to pay its workers £billions in bonuses?

        • balance_and_reason

          Whilst not wishing to support the socialist cause, my strong suspicion is that due to a severe weakening of the Bank of England’s oversight by Brown, and his enjoyment of mounting tax revenues sourced, banks expanded their balance sheets to astronomical size,RBS has a balance sheet larger than the UK’s annual gdp. To not bail them out would have sunk us. The criticism of labour should be that they allowed the situation to evolve.

  • Terence Hale

    Why Sajid Javid could end up at the top of the Tory tree. His somewhat abrasives appearance on the dispatch box gave me a cool impression, he seems to take thing personally.

    • Alexandrovich

      Unfortunately, they tend to.

  • In2minds

    So better than Warsi?

    • Pip

      Anyone is better than her, her peerage is a National Disgrace.

  • David Webb

    I could never vote for a British political party headed by a Pakistani.

    • HookesLaw

      What nasty litte a bigot you are. Meat and drink to the kipper tendency.
      He was born in Rochdale his father was a bus driver.
      Speaking personally I could always vote for somebody who campaigned against joining the ERM.

      Javid has previously stated he’s non-religious. He has said, ‘ my four brothers were brought up to believe in God, but I do not
      practise any religion. My wife is a practising Christian and the only
      religion practised in my house is Christianity. I think we should
      recognise that Christianity is the religion of our country’
      Note he said ‘our’ country.
      He has also said, ‘ I am proud of my Pakistani and Muslim heritage but, as I have myself
      said repeatedly, people who settle here should respect the British way
      of life, culture and traditions, and be required to learn our language.
      For too long we have championed an ideology of multiculturalism which
      has created divides rather than broken them down.’

      • southerner

        Do you cut and paste ALL your posts from Wikipedia (apart from the occasions you repeat verbatim CCHQ press releases) ?

        • HookesLaw

          It does not take much effort to find out the truth. You clearly like to wallow in the muck and excrement of bigotry rather than accept facts.

          • southerner

            So, yes then.

        • realfish

          What a strange post. Nothing wrong at all in cutting a pasting information that serves the purpose of enlightenment.

          • southerner

            What a strange (and illiterate) post.
            Everything wrong with cutting and pasting and pretending the opinion is your own.

            • realfish

              Illiterate? Sadly, I suppose someone who lacks the basic ability to distinguish facts and information from opinion might think so.

              • southerner

                Ha nice one fish. Even more sadly for you is someone who thinks that “cutting a pasting” is literate.

            • Ooh!MePurse!

              He acknowledged that the words were not his but they supported the point that he made so I don’t see your problem. And real fish clearly made a typo, that’s not the same as being illiterate.

      • Pip

        He is saying what the majority think, and that’s why you will always find yourself promoting the minority view.

        • HookesLaw

          You have done your personal properly researched poll have you.

      • paulus

        I have to agree with hooky on this to discriminate against some one on their ethnicity or the cultural background of their parents is bigoted and narrow minded, a national one nation Party cannot pander to the stupid.
        We must take the best and the brightest where ever they profess conservatism. And as conservatives are pragmatic about gaining and retaining power, i`m sure his ministerial team would gad about in turbans so long as he delivered the vote.

        • Daniel Maris

          I don’t think ethnicity comes into it. But cultural background is important. If I had heard that someone touting themselves as Britain’s next Prime Minister had been raised in a German supremacist colony in Paraguay, I’d want to ask some questions. If Mr Javid thinks there is something to be proud of in his Pakistani heritage, I’d like to know what it is. Is it Pakistan’s human rights record? Its environmental record? Its role in hunting down terrorists within its borders? Its Nobel Prize winners? Its contributions to world arts?

          • HookesLaw

            Large numbers of Pakistani soldiers have been killed fighting terrorists.
            20 Pakistani soldiers were killed in an attack in January. You are pathetic.

      • Daniel Maris

        I don’t know what motivates Mr Webb’s comment, but I think it reasonable to ask what exactly in his Pakistani heritage Mr Javid is proud of? As far as I can see Pakistan is a corrupt, violent, oppressive society, that contributes virtually nothing to world culture. Environmentally it is a complete basket case with flora and fauna being wiped out at an alarming rate. IN terms of human rights its treatment of minorities is horrific. It harbours terrorists on an industrial scale. What is there to be proud of?

        • Daniel Maris

          To add – if he’s REALLY HONESTLY TURTHFULLY proud of his Pakistani heritage (ie if it’s not just a politician’s lie) then I would be extremely concerned.

          • HookesLaw

            I’m sure Churchill was proud of being half american.
            Churchills grandson wrote
            ‘ Winston Churchill was half American by birth – a fact of which he was
            deeply proud. In his first address to a joint session of the United
            States Congress, on 26 December 1941, he teased the assembled Senators
            and Representatives with the mischievous suggestion, “If my father had
            been American and my mother British, instead of the other way ’round, I
            might have got here on my own!” ‘
            Indeed he also added that his grandfather might be part Iroquois – something which in your eyes I am sure would have barred you from voting for him.

            You are pathetic. All the kipper nutjobs are really exposing themselves over this one.
            Javid opposed ERM entry which demonstrates he has half a brain at least which is 95% more than most kippers have.

            • the viceroy’s gin

              …hey, whoever he is, he’s gotta be better than your boy Call Me Dave, lad.

              A stalk of celery would be better than Call Me Dave. And the celery would be more conservative, too.

      • tjamesjones

        thanks HookesLaw, a lot of nasty bigots make their home in the spectator comments sections. Good on Sajid Javid, we need more like him.

    • Chris Hobson

      That is unbelievable judge policy not the ethnicity.

    • Smithersjones2013

      It is not his ethnic background that you should be concerned about but the party he belongs to. Choosing such a divided and dysfunctional vehicle suggests a severe lack of judgement.

  • the viceroy’s gin

    It’s good to see that even the most obtuse Camerluvvie bubble denizen now recognizes that Dave is finished.

    But you should just say that, lad. Admit he’s finished, and then go on to explain why he’s finished. You want to make a name for yourself? Tell the truth. Shock us. Tell the truth. You’ll get a name, I promise you. The ride will get a mite rough to start, but you’ll have a name. But right now you’re apparently satisfied with being a useful idiot . It pays the bills, no doubt, so there’s that…

    • Chris Bond

      They are completely at a loss as to what to do. Their entire world is crumbling around them, yet all they can do is play the same old tunes. To quote Cameron, they are on the “wrong side of history”.
      UKIP get 15% plus on non skewed polls. 20% plus in by elections (28.2% in Sunderland St annes the other day, behind Labour on 48% and ahead of Conservatives on 17.6% .

      Conservatives are toast.

      • Liberty

        Vote UKIP – get Labour then no referendum, more mass immigration, more EU, more econonomic madness. If Labour do not need the LDs there will not be any PR either which would give UKIP a toehold.

        • the viceroy’s gin

          …so basically, any of the LibLabCon clones will deliver the same stale, socialist tripe, eh lad?

          • Liberty

            I share your feelings but we must consider the consequences of our vote. If voting UKIP means putting Labour in and all that means the we must consider whether that will further our interests in the medium term. If Labour get in especially with the LDs then it will be PR, no referendum, more EU, more gerrymandering with mass immigration and socialism for ever. If it is the Tories then we get a referendum and new constituency boundaries and UKIP will be there for the next time.

            • the viceroy’s gin

              Again, you’re basically advocating the same stale socialist tripe, which all of the LibLabCon blob is going to provide.

              And no, the Camerluvvies will provide nothing of what you’re claiming. They lie as easily as they take their next breath.

        • Adro

          To be honest, let them vote UKIP. The sooner that bunch of half-arsed colonel blimps are given some real power, the sooner they will implode into infighting and disappear.

      • Ooh!MePurse!

        Sunderland. That well known Conservative heartland.

        Nationally there are two players in town.

        If you want a Labour government then you go ahead and vote UKIP.

        Seems unfair on the rest of us but you are perfectly entitled to vote for a fringe party.

        • the viceroy’s gin

          LibLabCon are clones. If one clone is of the fringe, then all the clones are.

          Nothing’s “unfair on the rest of you”, lad. If you want to vote for clones, have at it.

  • crosscop

    Is he a practising Muslim or an apostate, Fraser? If he is indeed a devout Muslim then he is the last person we need to be in charge of any British political party – because the advance of Islam would be his prime goal. The only “lower income voters” he would be interested in helping would be those of his own faith – not the ones his Holy Book describes as “the worst of beasts.”
    Come on, do we really want someone who believes that in certain circumstances, Islam’s enemies can be crucified or mutilated and that any women who step out of line can be beaten should ever have a position of power in our country?
    The teachings of Islam are far worse than anything the BNP ever come up with, you know. Did you ask him if he will condemn FGM and those who carry it out and also admit his “prophet” was wrong when he recommended it? How about halal slaughter? Lopping off the hands of thieves? Shariah in general? Why no mention, Fraser?

    • HookesLaw

      See my post above. They practice Christianity in his house. What an @rse you are.

      • Daniel Maris

        An unjustified inference. I think “she” (his wife) “practises” Christianity in his house, from the Wikipedia entry you posted.

        It’s an interest insight though – very few British people apart from Muslims would speak about a religion being “practised” within their household. We tend to think of home being home, not as an arena for religious observance.

        If things are as you say and Mr Javid has abandoned his Islamic faith, then – while I welcome that – it would make it very difficult for the Tories to attract Muslim voters. Would they really vote for an apostate?

        • goatmince

          Weren’t Catholics once looked down upon like this, excluded, marginalised, disowned even? Look where we are now, no one in your churches ‘practising’ anything. A niche special interest group, this Anglican belief business?

  • Agrippina

    These are like some of the other articles about the tories to try and attract the BME voters. But warsi (immigration solicitor, born here and struggles with our lang) and others like her damage that potential vote, so good try but he won’t be PM.

    Dave should have promoted people with real talent, not just his uni and old school chums. But then he was a PR man all shine and no substance.

    • tjamesjones

      But this isn’t about Warsi, this isn’t about Dave’s uni and school chums. You’re just tilting at windmills. Sajid Javid is a smart guy who is more straight down the line conservative than David Cameron. If all you can say is his dad was a foreigner, then fine, that’s all you’ve got to say.

  • tom jones

    I’d like Javid more if HE had struggled rather than his daddy having struggled. Many in the Tory party are born into privilege, but I feel more connected and supportive of those who have worked their way to the top and had real jobs that weren’t always managerial.

    • BigAl

      Like the shadow cabinet.

      Javid took advantage of a quality state education and the rest is history. I don’t think he would have been regarded as being born into privilege……

    • HookesLaw

      pathetic bluster.

    • Pip

      He is no different or better than his boss and as such is unfit for office and if the Spectator believes that he is the future of the Tories and the UK then they truly have lost the plot.

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