Coffee House

What does the Conservative Party offer ethnic minorities?

5 May 2014

It was the ethnic minority vote that swung it for David Cameron. Had it voted in line with expert pre-election predictions – which foolishly forecast that the Conservatives would scrape a mere 16 per cent of Britain’s non-white English voters – a hung Parliament would have resulted, and he might have been condemned to a fractious coalition with the Liberal Democrats.

Instead, marginal seats tumbled into the Tory column: Chris Philp in Hampstead and Kilburn won by a whopping 10,034; Mark Clarke in Tooting by 5,421 (thus unseating Sadiq Khan, that rising Labour star); even Nigel Dawkins in Birmingham Selly Oak scraped home by 599 votes – re-taking a seat for the Conservatives that they last won in 1987, the best part of 25 years before. “This election has proved that the Conservatives are a party for the whole country,” an exultant David Cameron proclaimed on the steps of Downing Street, framed in the bright light of the mid-day sun. The Tories made it over the winning line by 12 seats.

The reality for Conservatives

Readers will take the point of this fantasy. In reality, the Conservatives did gain only 16 per of that ethnic minority vote, and Cameron was indeed consigned to coalition. A powerful combination of the distribution of the vote as a whole and the propensity of ethnic minority members to vote Labour now threatens to make the Tories the natural party of Opposition – in a mirror image to the recent fate of the Republicans in American Presidential elections, four out of six of which have been won by the Democrats. The compellingly exact figures above, which mock the Prime Minister with what might have been, come courtesy of a study by British Future, which projected what would have happened had ethnic minority members voted in the same way as their non-ethnic minority counterparts. Bradford East, Derby North, Dudley North, Halifax, Nottingham South, Walsall South, Wolverhampton North-East: with a decent share of the ethnic minority vote, some of the Midlands and northern seats that Cameron needs to win to form a majority next time round would already be tucked up in the Conservative column.

So what is driving this phenomenon that cost Cameron victory in 2010, and threatens the Conservatives’ future as a One Nation party? What is Number 10 and Conservative Campaign Headquarters doing about it, and what more could be done? Finding the right answers means avoiding some dangerous misconceptions. All ethnic minority voters may have a very few features in common (such as a greater reluctance than other people to vote Conservative), but it would be ignorant, patronising and inaccurate to treat them a single undifferentiated electoral lump. The 16 per cent figure quoted above – that is the proportion of ethnic minority voters that supported the Tories last time round – is from a Runnymede Trust analysis of the last election, but it conceals quite a bit of variation. Among African-origin voters, the Conservative total fell as low as six per cent; among Indian-origin ones, it climbed as high as 24 per cent (among white voters, it was 37 per cent).

The causes

At a glance, we might therefore assume that income is everything – that, since Indian-origin voters are on the whole better off than African-origin ones, the voting habits of ethnic minority voters will come into line with those of non-ethnic minority ones if their living standards rise. However, as Lord Ashcroft has written: “the Conservative Party’s unpopularity among black and Asian voters is not simply a matter of class and geography. There were sometimes strikingly different results between white and non-white voters living in the same area, and between different ethnic minority groups. Among ethnic minority voters the Conservatives’ brand problem exists in a more intense form. For many of our participants – by no means all, it is important to state – there was an extra barrier between them and the Conservative Party directly related to their ethnic background.”

Those words come from ‘Degrees of Separation’, Ashcroft’s report into ethnic minorities and the Conservatives. It was, in his words, “the biggest such survey ever conducted in Britain”, and its findings overlap substantially with those of David Sanders’s for the Economic and Social Research Council. Ethnic minority respondents to the Ashcroft polling and focus groups cited the Smethwick campaign of 1964, Enoch Powell’s ‘Rivers of Blood’ speech and the Stephen Lawrence case as reasons for shunning the Tories. That the notorious Smethwick leaflets weren’t distributed by the Conservatives, that Powell didn’t actually say “rivers of blood”, and that John Major’s Government wasn’t involved in the Lawrence case is beside the point. To many ethnic minority voters, Labour is the party that welcomed immigrants, that passed the Race Relations Act and which instigated the Macpherson report into the Lawrence murder.

Claim your gift

In short, David Cameron’s party has the electoral equivalent of body odour as far as a significant proportion of ethnic minority members are concerned. A photo montage of words from focus groups, imposed on the Tory tree in ‘Degrees of Separation’, makes depressing reading for Conservatives: “For the Rich. Rubbish. Selfish. Upper Class. Unfair,” shriek the responses (together with the occasional neutral word, such as “Business” and, both prominently and unexpectedly, the word “Good”).

Number Ten’s response has been to start in the right place: by grasping that this lost ground can’t be made up by a quick sprint, but will require a long-distance run – in other words, by local Conservatives working patiently alongside ethnic minority voters and communities for the common good. For only by being there can they make the obvious point: that Tory values are also those of a large number of ethnic minority voters, and that most Tory people simply want to make their country and communities better.

Canadian Conservatives

Downing Street and CCHQ didn’t simply work all this out for themselves, though both have invested time and trouble over polling and research in Government that was lacking in opposition. Rather, they have looked long and hard at the experience of the Canadian Conservatives, who won over two in five of the country’s ethnic minority voters in its 2011 election. The latter argue that it was the previous Liberal Government’s decision to support same-sex marriage – which split the tripartite coalition of Catholics, socially conservative immigrants and liberal progressives which upheld it – that allowed the Conservatives to get a foot in the ethnic minority door. But whatever the reasons may have been, Stephen Harper’s party made the most of its opportunity. The party’s outreach to ethnic minority voters was led by the indefatigable Jason Kenney, now Canada’s Minister of Employment, Social Development and, crucially, Multiculturalism.

Harper regularly goes round the Cabinet table to ask what community events his Ministers have attended over the weekend, such is the importance that he places on keeping the votes that the Conservatives have won – and improving further. Cameron has taken to following in Harper’s footsteps in his own political Cabinet, though less regularly. And for better or worse, his Government lacks the larger number of special advisers that Harper’s uses to buttress policy work on issues of special interest to ethnic minority voters.

Building bridges

This takes us to three policy areas which the Conservatives might address in order to speed up that long march among their British equivalents.

First, the Conservatives must address micro-issues that have particular play with ethnic minority voters. In this context, some work has been done but there is a lot more to do. Mixed-sex wards have gone (though their removal has been under-publicised). Hard-hat exemptions for Sikhs have followed earlier ones for motor cycle helmets – eventually, and rather late.

The timing of that last announcement was poor. It was made in the aftermath of revelations about the Thatcher Government’s alleged involvement in Operation Bluestar, the Indian Army’s operation to flush out militants from the Golden Temple in Amritsar in 1984. Any move to, for example, speed up inquests in some cases (swift burial is a feature of Islamic belief) or curb stop and search (as many black and ethnic minority voters want) or admit more students from India who will contribute to economic growth and the tax take will need to be better timed.

Stop and Search is a practice that is ripe for reform. There is every reason to retain it. As Theresa May told the Commons last year, it has resulted in 45,000 criminals being arrested in London, for example. But as she went on to point out, the capital provides a good example of how it can be reworked. The complaint is that fewer than one in ten stop and searches result in an arrest – nine per cent, to be more precise. And the figures show that if someone is from a black or minority ethnic background, they are up to seven times more likely to be stopped and searched than if they are white.

The Met has succeeded in reducing the number of stop and searches while increasing the arrest rate: the former has fallen from 500,000 to 350,000, while the the latter has risen from eight per cent to 18 per cent. This happened after guidance for stop and search was changed and a target set for 20 per cent of stop and searches in London to result in an arrest or drugs warning. The Met is clearly targeting the people who should be arrested, thus using their time more efficiently and improving confidence in stop and search. There is a clear case for other forces following the Met’s example and setting their own target, as Theresa May appears to want them to do – though there is resistance to the proposal in Downing Street.

The golden rule should always be that any policy with ethnic minority appeal must also be in the interest of voters as a whole – a consideration that applies to Alok Sharma’s call for listed companies to disclose publicly their ethnic balance. With such MPs as Gavin Barwell, Kris Hopkins, Priti Patel and Paul Uppal, Sharma – a Party Vice-Chairmen – is leading the push to engage with ethnic minority voters in a more purposeful way. Mrs May, Chris Grayling and Eric Pickles have been among the Cabinet members most frequently deployed to help.

This leads directly to the second way in which efforts to engage with ethnic minority voters should be consolidated. New groups, such as Conservative Friends of Pakistan, have come into being since 2010. The danger is that they will fall victim, like some previous initiatives, to the urgency of the electoral cycle. The pattern is wearisomely familiar. Elections are won and lost. New Party Chairmen come and go. So do staff with their expertise, contacts, relationships and institutional memory. Money raised is fiercely targeted on marginal seats. This is fine for each short-term cycle, but destructive in the long run. CCHQ needs a community affairs department with ring-fenced fundraising – one that is backed from the top and is there for the long-term. Finally, Cameron needs to end the long Tory war against multiculturalism – a way of life that polling shows most Conservative voters support, though by multi-culturalism they mean the multi-racial society, rather than some multi-cultural practices.

For Cameron, this would not mean repudiating his Munich speech on extremism, most of the content of which was excellent, so much as standing it on its head. Instead of Tories being against multiculturalism, we should be for integration – and everything that the idea suggests, such as those who enter the country having a basic grasp of English and Britain’s history, values, institutions and culture. Indeed, being for things rather than against them is indispensable to quickening progress in the long, arduous and slow journey towards being more like the country we seek to govern.

Paul Goodman is the Editor of ConservativeHome and was Conservative MP for Wycombe, 2001-2010.

This essay is taken from The Modernisers’ Manifesto, which is published by the think-tank Bright Blue.

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Show comments
  • Adrian Wainer

    ” Any move to, for example, speed up inquests in some cases (swift burial is a feature of Islamic belief) or curb stop and search (as many black and ethnic minority voters want) or admit more students from India who will contribute to economic growth and the tax take will need to be better timed. “,.

    How about announcing it during the August holiday when people are less likely to spot it and raise objections that speeding up inquests will mean that when Muslim men have murdered female relatives it will be more likely that the fact that a murder has taken place will be missed. As for students from India, no doubt announcing such a measure during August would useful for getting around concerns that does the UK really need to import more Muslim Jihadi suicide bombers?

  • Frank

    Be much more simple to have policies that appealed to people and have fewer policies that repelled people (oh and fewer troughers as MPs might help a great deal).
    Come one, you are facing Miliband and Clegg, how hard can it be to have intelligent policies presented by intelligent honest people?

  • Sapporo

    Typical unconscious racism from the political elite. You assume the “ethnics” want different things from the white, British majority and that they are one homogeneous mass. That is racist. I am married to an “ethnic minority” and she does not want to be constantly told she is different by the political class, she wants to be accepted. The trouble with you lot, Paul, is that are all from white, middle-class backgrounds and you have had very little interaction with the groups -such as “ethnics” and the working-classes – you seek to patronise.

  • Roy

    Why all the fuss and bother about minorities? Isn’t it about time the majority was catered for? The minorities have had their run of extreme coddling, let them look after themselves. What other country would be so darned fussed over these people that ten to one, will bite the hand that feeds them? That will take advantage of the freedoms given to begin a campaign of hate and disruption against their protectors and sanctuary. Wake up, and take care of your own.

  • rtj1211

    Well, if they’re good looking enough, I’m sure it offers them some stormingly hot totty…..

  • Tony_E

    Labour wanted to “Rub the right’s nose in diversity” – and they have. The right will never hold power again in the UK.

    But the cost will be severe.

  • Shorne

    Part of the answer to the question posed by this article can be seen in the majority of the comments posted here and the supreme irony is the angry old white men who post them are incapable of seeing it.

    • Blindsideflanker

      Seeing what ?

      • Shorne

        That Tory (and UKIP) supporters don’t like ethnic minorities…the fact that you had to ask is further proof.

        • Rhoda Klapp8

          The fact that he(?) had to ask is prooof that you are not only ageist sexist and racist, but you are incoherent too, which in this context is a greater sin.

  • concerned

    I think we all know that there won’t be much progress on this front
    for a couple of decades. Baby boomers are probably the last generation
    in which racists will subsist in any significant numbers and we will need to wait for them to expire before we begin to see real change. I suppose the
    likelihood is that by the time that happens, the Tory party in its
    current form will have ceased to exist, having been absorbed by the Lib
    Dems and a marginalised UKIP.

    • Sapporo

      Only somebody who has little interaction with different ethnic groups and has led a cosseted life would assume this. Mass immigration has produced segregation, with that you get prejudice and conflict.

  • concerned

    This article provides a timely reminder of the oft overlooked distinction between multi-racialism and multi-culturalism. I’m sure that multi-culturalism is a hated term among minorities, seeing as it is often a code for criticism of multi-racialism. It is clear that the vast majority of immigrants are keen to integrate into this successful country. Most of the immigrants I have met conform considerably more closely to ideals of Britishness or Englishness than many of those whom the BNP/UKIP refer to as ‘indigenous’ Britons. I therefore doubt that many would seek to go out on a limb to defend the maligned term that is multi-culturalism.

    It is the rejection of the modern fact that is multi-racialism by an unknown proportion of right-wingers that will continue to keep minorities away from the Conservatives. Why would you vote for a party which contains a significant element who appear to be questioning your right to exist in your country of birth, or to stay here safely with your British family members?

    • the viceroy’s gin

      Actually, you don’t seem “concerned”. I’d characterize you more as a concern troll.

  • transponder

    What does Britain have to offer ethnic or any other minorities? (The only valid question.) How about: The chance to live in freedom and with respect for the individual such as has rarely existed in any country, tribe, or political regime anywhere in the history of the world?

    What more can they ask — never mind expect — than that?

  • the viceroy’s gin

    Well, our Camerluvvie acolyte Mr. Goodman is a little misguided about the evolution of conservative politics in Canada.

    First, Mr. Kenny had nothing to do with anything positive for Harper’s government, as regards ethnic minorities. This is simply a years old lie that our Camerluvvie friend is foisting off, and to support his socialist dreams of additional immigration, same as in Canada. Statistics show it didn’t work electorally in Canada. And I will be happy to review his documented statistics and links, to support his contentions to the contrary. Here’s one supporting the opposite.

    “In short, the core of the Conservative vote came from Canadians along
    with some support from immigrants who have been in the country at least
    for 10 years. So it appears Jason Kenney and the Conservatives
    accomplished nothing more than import more supporters for their
    political rivals. Talk about shooting yourself in the foot.”

    Now, here is the real story behind Harper’s party’s path to power. The Progressive Conservative Party in Canada, which was the equivalent of the Camerluvvies today, was completely abandoned by conservatives in the 1990’s. They were pure socialists, had abandoned even the slightest semblance of conservative thought, and Mulroney had basically enacted a socialist agenda during his final days as PM. So conservatives did then what they are doing today in the UK re the Camerluvvies. They abandoned the faux “conservatives” in droves.

    Thus, the Canadian Progressive Conservative Party was completely destroyed. The conservative rump of it was absorbed into a new Conservative Party, which had formed in Calgary and built itself up into prominence nationally. It is this party that has taken a majority in Canada. And they didn’t do it because of chasing racial minorities, and giving them goodies. They did it by deploying conservative policies.

    So the lesson from Canada is that wet lumps like Call Me Dave must be eliminated, and that is what is about to occur. After they are removed, the conservative rump can be joined with true conservatives (UKIP most likely) to form an attractive conservative party.

    That’s the historical lesson from Canada. First, the muppets like Mr. Goodman and Call Me Dave are driven off, then all socialist impulses are destroyed, and then space is created for conservatives. Then conservatives win elections. That’s the final step, as in Canada.

    Suggest Mr. Goodman take a good look around him. In less than 10 years, political life as he knows it will be gone forever, just as in Canada.

  • Thoughtful Ulsterman

    I assume that this article refers to the “white” minority of 8-12% (and dropping) in this Trotskyist globalist dystopia? Or maybe the “white British” in London?

  • Blindsideflanker

    If the Conservatives want to know why they are failing then they have to look no further than likes of Paul Goodman who have swallowed the Cultural Marxist’s agenda hook line a sinker.

    Instead of stand for values that are applicable to all, they instead believe success will come if they pander to minority tribalism and bribe these tribal groups. Unfortunately for them that route leads to chaos and disaster, for you can never bribe every interest group, and by bribing one you invite disaster if you don’t bribe another.

    But when the Conservatives are led by a bunch of spivs who have hijacked the party for whom values are an anathema and short term tactics are everything, we shouldn’t be surprised they have bought into Cultural Marxism for when values are absent what other electoral lazy tactic could be considered than bribing tribal groupings.

    PS Why elese is the Scottish referendum going so badly for the No’s. Even after offering one constitutional bribe after another they find the Yes’s overhauling them, for the very simple reason Salmond offers a vision, while Cameron and crew offer bribes, and values trump bribes every day of the week.

  • Jikli

    “What does the Conservative Party offer ethnic minorities?”

    Nothing…. but a bit of patronising.

    UKIP has more BME PPCs than the pointless Tories, and we don’t insist on ours having gone to a Public School either

  • you_kid

    What do they offer?
    They offer a failed banker the position of Culture Secretary which puts him into control of Church Commision assets – that’s what they offer.

    • the viceroy’s gin

      …it was either that or one of you socialist envirowhacko nutters. They chose the lesser of two weevils.

  • Rhoda Klapp8

    If ethnic minorities are to be regarded as voting blocs, that multi-culturalism thing definitely is not working. The thing about identifiable minorities is that they prefer to vote for someone like themselves. No harm in that, but when a representative who is supposed to speak for everybody in his constituency favours one kind over another, that is not particularly satisfactory. We need to treat people equally. No penalty for being different by nature. But those who are different by behaviour should expect that to have consequences. No party should be going after the vote of this or that bloc identifiable by race or immigration status. Oh, and it never works, either.

  • david trant

    Hmmm what Paul neglected to say, (I wonder why) the more welcoming the Tory party is to ethnic minority voters, the more attractive to traditional Tory voters UKIP becomes. I think they call it, ‘Between a rock and a hard place’

  • swatnan

    Excellent article! which gets to the gist of things, that BAME are no longer voting on ethnic lines but its down to class and income levels and housing affordability.And that trend will continue. And thats why I won’t be voting Tory, being from the working class.
    But its true that the tories have changed their tune from overtly racist, to covertly racist, but no doubt this will change in time as the racist element move to UKIP. Cameron made a smart move in appointing sayeeda Warsi as Chair; several smart BAME Tories like Sarjid in Cabinet now, but it’ll not affect me, as the focus is still on keeping the wealthy and bankers and the landed gentry in the life they are accustomed to. There is no fair redistribution of wealth from the 10% that hold it and power to the rest of us. Until that happens the Tories will not be getting my vote.

    • Alexsandr

      i think you need to qualify the racist slur.

    • Redrose82

      “I won’t be voting Tory, being from the working class.” Well I too am from the working class – I spent 50 years as one of the WORKING class. I worked and saved and I wish to best preserve what I worked and saved for and hand it down to my offspring when I go. So I will be voting Conservative because the alternative fills me with fear and trembling for my children and my country. We cannot stand the economic ravages that another dose of socialism will bring with the two block Eds in charge.

      • Redrose82

        I might add that that is the only possible alternative. Those who dream of Nigel getting any sort of representation in the House of Commons are living in cloud cuckoo land. I wish it were not so but I am a realist and although I agree wholeheartedly with what UKIP stand for I do not intend to throw my vote away.

        • the viceroy’s gin

          If you vote for the socialist LibLabCon clones, then you are throwing your vote away.

  • balance_and_reason

    Come on peeps, Labour went to extreme effort to remove the doors on the immigration shed, They have taken a lot of grief for betraying their core base by doing so…at least let them reap the benefit of their policy; 10 million impoverished migrants, 10 million votes for labour…Tally ho…who said gerrymandering was illegal.

    • Alexsandr

      we must not let the people forget they harboured the dysfunctional gordon brown, who had severe anger management issues. That they were the party of the illegal war in Iraq, and the sexed up dossier. They they were the party who left a ‘Theres no money’ note because they had overspent. They were the party who sold our gold at rock botom, and raided our pensions. They were the party that had paedophile apologists in the core of government. And now they are the party of hate and envy, in hock to the unions.

      • balance_and_reason

        Cant we all just forgive and forget?

        • Alexsandr

          no. a party that made such a godawful mess before must not be allowed to do it again.

          • balance_and_reason

            You are forgetting that working your way up through a council/local labour party in some regions is the only way to get a high paying job….you are stepping on people’s aspirations

  • Raw England

    By pandering to the ethnic population, the Tories are becoming irreversibly toxic and hated to the British people.

    The people (a big majority) hate what immigration has done to Britain; they like it even less when politicians put immigrants first.

    The ethnic population has been given more than enough preferential treatment. Affirmative Action must be STOPPED and reversed.

    • Grey Wolf

      I agree with you that multi-culturalism is a failure and that mass immigration has had adverse results.

      However, you credit ‘the people’ with too much wisdom. Blair-Brown-Mandelson led New Labour opened the flood-gates to mass immigration and yet they were returned to power THRICE by the ‘the people’.

      • Raw England

        I agree. But partly that’s only because the vast majority of native Brits don’t vote. People had/have given up out of total despair and hatred for the system.

        The native population, if we all actually voted, have the power to elect anybody we want.

        • Grey Wolf

          Well, there is some truth in that. I am hoping some of that will change in the May elections and then next year. But I was really pointing to something far more sinister.
          The British have been softened in their sensibilities to mass immigration by their elite who are under the influence of Cultural Marxist beliefs (and banking globalists). The proponents of such thoughts have sapped the strength of the people by planting wrong ideas everywhere. These people control both sides of the debate – either you are listening to their liberals or their deceptive neo-cons (ex-Trotskyists).
          I am glad that UKIP has alerted the people to tricks of these two sides. Nick Cohen is a good example of the vileness as are so many others, some even write for this rag.

  • Denis_Cooper

    Notwithstanding the Telegraph having commissioned its own weird opinion poll showing that all the other opinion polls are wrong and really the Tories are now running neck-and-neck with Labour, those managing the Electoral Calculus site have just updated their charts for the last month’s opinion poll results, and the general pattern of the recent changes fits in well with the general pattern of changes which has operated for nearly two years now.

    UKIP has gone up a bit, while the Tories have gone down a bit, BUT LABOUR HAVE ALSO GONE DOWN BY ABOUT THE SAME AS THE TORIES.

    Oh, and the LibDems have also managed to get themselves down a bit, it now being clearer that their previous “flat” line since early 2011 actually has a gentle downwards slope.

    So the Labour lead over the Tories remains roughly unchanged at 3%, not 1% as the Telegraph and some others like to pretend, and THE LABOUR LEAD OVER THE TORIES HAS NOT BEEN SIGNIFICANTLY INCREASED BY UKIP GAINING MORE GROUND, despite habitual Tory wailing about UKIP “stealing our voters”.

    And of course it is not enough for the Tories to be just ahead of Labour; they were 7% ahead of Labour in 2010 and that resulted in a hung Parliament, and as the LibDems blocked the boundary changes the Tories wanted they still need to be about that far ahead of Labour to have a chance of getting an overall majority; and in fact on the current polling numbers the prediction on that site is for a Labour majority of 40.

  • MC73

    Surely what the Tories should be offering ethnic minorities is exactly the same as they offer everyone else?

    • Alexsandr


    • Conway

      Emphasise the should!

  • cartimandua

    A bunch of beads while they take Manhattan. Multiculturalism will leave minorities on the bottom of the pile but “feeling” that they have been respected.

  • Redrose82

    If the vast majority of ethnic minority voters do not vote Conservative why pander to them in any way. Let Labour have them and start to look after the people who can get a Conservative government back in unfettered power – the white and blue collar WORKERS.

  • MirthaTidville

    The question isnt so much..what does it offer the Ethnic Minorities…much more what does it offer anyone???????????????? so long as this present crop of buffoons are in charge

  • Cooper1992

    “What does the Conservative Party offer ethnic minorities?”

    The promise of being a majority in the not-too-distant future.

    • Conway

      More to the point, what does the Conservative Party offer the indigenous population?

  • JoeDM

    “What does the Conservative Party offer ethnic minorities?”

    Too bloody much !!!

  • Denis_Cooper

    In his most recent blog article:

    the Tory MEP Daniel Hannan offers an alternative explanation for his party failing to win the last general election against a Labour government which had led the country into economic and financial disaster, and that is Cameron’s decision to cave in over the Lisbon Treaty which he announced on November 4th 2009.

    He says:

    “That decision was a terrible error, and probably cost the party an absolute majority the following year.”

    He continues:

    “I thought it unconscionable, and resigned from the Euro front bench in protest.”

    But no so “unconscionable” that he saw fit to resign from the Tory party, and now he is urging us to vote for the same Tory party still under the same leaders who took that “unconscionable” decision.

    Abject surrender, after two years of stringing along Tory supporters and the wider public with the repeated pledge that they “would not let matters rest there” even if the treaty had already come into force, a pledge included in their manifesto for the last EU Parliament elections in June 2009.

    • Conway

      Deeds not words. My “EU-sceptic” MP has actually voted pro-EU all the way. I’m looking forward to campaigning against him next year!

  • Martin Jennerson

    This article has the tone which is SO typical of the political class – no awareness of the depth of the ethnic changes that are occurring in this country, no willingness to engage with what they actually mean. Just a blind faith that the status quo will continue and everything will be fine with more ‘multiculturalism’ – which means clear favouritism in practice, the purpose of disclosing the ethnic balance of companies for e.g. would be to favour minorities and everyone would recognise that.

  • RavenRandom

    Ethnic minorities, great, more pandering.

  • @PhilKean1

    Something deeply troubling and offensive when, taken to it’s implied conclusion, the “Conservative Party” is asking itself what it can offer which is counter to standards the British people have come to expect of living in a civilised western country – purely to purchase the votes of yet another minority.

    I mean, they tried the same with Gay Marriage. So far it has secured them 3 votes. 1 in Brighton, and 2 who’ve defected from the Socialist Liberal Party.

    • Conway

      As many as that?

  • Jim_Watford

    Preferential treatment.

  • Denis_Cooper

    Before I spend time reading what Paul Goodman has to say in this article perhaps he could make it clear whether I would then be permitted to make any comment on its contents, other than to agree with the current Tory party line.

    • @PhilKean1

      Read it without realising it was Paul. Stay on topic, then, Denis :-)

  • SmellyFingers

    Free house and more benefits than Brits are even allowed. Not to mention immunity from certain crimes. Basically the same as Labour.

  • Mike

    “David Cameron’s party has the electoral equivalent of body odour as far
    as a significant proportion of ethnic minority members are concerned” — Correction, lets call it differently as most in the country smell Cameron in the same way and view him as an elitist looking after his own (and himself) and disregarding the wishes and interests that concern the majority.

    He reneged on a EU referendum, he backs criminals in his own party instead of dumping them immediately as Farage has done, and importantly, he bottled out of a real debate with UKIPs leader.

    Even this new half hearted attempt to have a debate with Farage provided Lib, Lab, and some loud mouthed green party member are present shows his cowardice to go head to head with Farage. Its tantamount to needing others around him to change his diapers in case he wets his pants against Farage.

  • Ron Todd

    The Labour party has the advantage of being the party of mass immigration. Anybody that wants more of the relatives to get in to the UK will vote Labour.

    • @PhilKean1

      And Cameron’s Party AREN’T the party of mass immigration? Look again.

      Cameron is a defender of the Federal enabler that is “The Single Market” – which has unlimited EU migration as a core tenet.

      • Ron Todd

        Yes as long as we are in the EU we cannot control immigration from the EU. What is of greater concern to most people is non EU immigration. We need to limit immigration to those with particular skills while we integrate those that are already here better, before letting huge numbers of new immigrants in.

        • @PhilKean1

          It may be of concern to most people at the moment, because they aren’t yet fully aware of the catastrophic long-term political and social impact they will suffer from unlimited EU immigration.

          There are two types of immigration. Non-EU, which has no power to strip the people of their sacred democratic
          And EU immigration which, as it’s adverse political effects become increasingly virulent, will corrupt the British peoples’ ability to make a rational judgement in the national interest about Britain’s relationship with the EU.

          BOTH forms of immigration we will be able to control on that happy day when we escape EU dictatorship.

    • telemachus

      If it were simplistic like that, I would be delighted
      However the actual reality is that the Tories themselves have made the party unelectable
      They have long been seen as Theresa May’s ‘Nasty Party’
      But to this is now added the ‘Home Counties’ tag
      The North with its high immigrant population has always been difficult for the Tories for these 2 reasons
      But the behaviour of the Coalition has enhanced the Home Counties tag
      It is an image thing
      The cosy aristocratic cabal running the country do not look as if they care for the folk in the Northern inner cities immigrant or home grown
      The Tories will never rule again

      • @PhilKean1

        Hopefully, THESE “Tories” will never rule again.

        But we’d better hope that real Conservatives are able to regain control of their party.

        The British people are sunk if they don’t.

        • telemachus

          ….real Conservatives
          You mean the ‘Really Nasty Party’

          • MirthaTidville

            No the REALLY nasty party are yours….dictators all of em

            • telemachus

              May said it
              May meant it

              • Colonel Mustard

                Actually, you liar, she said this:-

                “There’s a lot we need to do in this party of ours. Our base is too narrow and so, occasionally, are our sympathies. You know what some people call us – the nasty party.

                I know that’s unfair. You know that’s unfair but it’s the people out there we need to convince – and we can only do that by avoiding behaviour and attitudes that play into the hands of our opponents. No more glib moralising, no more hypocritical finger-wagging.”

                …in 2002. Something of an own goal. But the glib moralising and hypocritical finger-wagging was then taken over by the “New” Labour party and continues to this day under Son of Communist, leader of the real nasty party.

                • telemachus

                  …people call us the nasty party
                  This is the sound bite that is reported and rereported in the media (google all the references)
                  And why
                  Because it strikes a chord

                • Colonel Mustard

                  Trust you to completely miss the point and then score your own spectacular goal.

                • telemachus

                  I had not finished when you reposted
                  And learn

                • Colonel Mustard

                  I have nothing to learn from the likes of you, even when you manipulate your comments as deviously as you seek to manipulate discourse.

          • @PhilKean1

            You will find that it has only been the actions of real Conservatives on the backbenches that has prevented Cameron’s Coalition selfishly and gratuitously penalising the very people we rely on to pay the nation’s bills.


            • telemachus

              I understand the point
              However if you allow divisive policies to flourish you end eventually with civil unrest

              • Ron Todd

                What policy is more divisive than letting ‘communities’ promote their own religious laws and customs above the laws that the rest of us have to live by?

                • telemachus

                  I have never and would never advocate such
                  We are in England and must adhere to English law
                  We must work with incomers

              • Colonel Mustard

                You couldn’t get more divisive than subjecting the country to a decade of uncontrolled mass immigration to rub the right’s nose in diversity.

                • telemachus

                  I understood that point a week last Wednesday when I read the billboards

                • Colonel Mustard

                  Apparently you didn’t and don’t. But you will. You will.

                • telemachus

                  What I do understand is that faced with huge posters telling them that 26 million people are after their job hundreds of people are in fear of their livelihood
                  Many more are in fear of a knock an the door and a van to take them to Dover
                  Those who do not condemn are complicit in the creation of a society of fear

                • Alexsandr

                  you really a stupid man. The posters said no such thing. They said that all the unemployed in the EU were chasing the jobs people in the UK were going for. which is a justifiable position to take.

                • telemachus

                  You are wrong
                  I have just been on the stump in Liverpool and know what folk took from these posters

                • Colonel Mustard

                  A society of fear was created by your party in government from 1997 to 2010. The posters are just part of the fall out from that.

          • Inverted Meniscus

            No that would be Fascist Labour.

      • Wessex Man

        I have a dream, a song to sing
        to help me quote with anything
        if you see the wonder of a fairy tale
        you can take the future even if you fail
        I believe in Angels
        something good in everything I see
        I believe in Angels
        When I know the time is right for me
        I’ll cross the stream, I have a dream.

        tele, this song could become your anthem mate or even Ed Miliband’s.

        • telemachus

          You missed the important bit

          When I know the time is right for me
          I’ll cross the stream – I have a dream
          The Eds are about to cross the Rubicon

          • Alexsandr

            did you see muppet milliband on marr yesterday? Do you really think that unipn puppet could win an election and be taken seriously internationaly?

            • telemachus

              Your point is just a little tenable
              Remember however his team
              I suspect Miliband will be replaced by Balls before the end of 2016

              • Alexsandr

                thats if the good people of morley and outwood return him as MP in 2015. He only had a maj of 1101 in 2010 so ripe for decapitation. That would be delicious.

                • telemachus

                  Ed is a superstar so imbued with charisma that the electorate will ensure his return with a greatly increased majority

                • Colonel Mustard

                  Only to deranged halfwits like you.

                • telemachus

                  Mr Mustard man
                  You must retain your humour even on a bank holiday
                  When the Home Counties roads are clogged by your neighbours returning from their country cottages
                  In their 4×4’s

                • Colonel Mustard

                  You are lying again. As I have told you many times before I don’t live in the Home Counties.

                • telemachus

                  It goes to type
                  Do not deny your natural constituency

                • Colonel Mustard

                  I am not defined by the likes of you, telemachus. Neither by your arrogant presumptions nor your boastful hubris. You and your party might like to claim dominion over everything but freedom from it is soaring.

                  We are happy as your miserable construct first cracks and then crashes.

                • Alexsandr

                  typical leftie. always want to label everybody.

                • Alexsandr

                  sorry, I have shut my curtains. cant see the flying pigs.

              • Inverted Meniscus

                Who will be replaced by the IMF a couple of months later having bankrupted the country.

              • Conway

                If Balls replaces Miliband, I doubt it will enhance Labour’s election chances. Ed B is no more photogenic, no more easy on the ear and no less tainted by 13 years of mismanagement in office.

                • telemachus

                  The issue was competence to run the country in the eyes of other countries
                  Ed Balls is a man of character who cuts muster

                • Conway

                  So Ed B only appeals to foreigners in other countries, is that what you’re saying? He has to garner votes here until the EU takes over completely. He may be a man of character, but it isn’t a particularly attractive one, unfortunately for him.

                • telemachus

                  Atttractive to whom
                  He has a natural magnetism that makes folks smile

                • Alexsandr

                  makes them point and laugh more like.

                • oldestel

                  “Attractive to whom
                  He has a natural magnetism that makes folks smile”

                  It isn’t a good idea to take the p**s out of your Fuhrer Telemachus

      • Alexsandr

        These will be the northern cities swamped with immigration that has betrayed the indigenous people of everything. They will see the immigrants getting everything while they get nowt. And they will increasingly and rightly blame Labour. Soon labour will be for some immigrant communities and for a diminished public sector workforce and the lefty intelectiuals. Everyone else will see them as anti british vandals.

        • Flintshire Ian

          Sadly, not soon enough. The only chance of a sane government post 2015 is if the Jocks decide to leave and take their Labour MPs with them

          On a related subject mentioned in the article…..does the right for a Sikh not to wear a motorcycle helmet or a hard hat include a mandatory waiver of any NHS treatment for any injuries caused by exercising that right? Thought not.

          • Shorne

            65,0000 Sikhs fought in the British Army in WW1 and 300,000 in WW2.
            “S11 of the Employment Act 1989 exempts turban-wearing Sikhs from any requirements to wear safety helmets on a construction site. Where a turban-wearing Sikh is injured on a construction site liability for injuries is restricted to the injuries that would have been sustained if the Sikh had been wearing a safety helmet.”

            The 2011 census showed that Flintshire is 96% White British
            Sod off.

      • Inverted Meniscus

        Vote up if you think Telemachus should be Britain’s entry in the Eurovision Idiot Contest to be held in Brussels later this year.

    • Dutchnick

      There is a difference between the different groups, those who are successful and make an attemp to integrate are welcome very likely to vote Tory. The wastelands of Bradford et al will not.

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