Mr Johnson is trying to become a Little Trump in this side of the pond. With little help from new found friend Steve Bannon, a former Donald Trump strategist, Mr Johnson can easily attract the disgruntled far-right. Mr Johnson is burning the bridges built by David Cameron and others to bring BAME votes to the party fold….writes Kaliph Anaz
The genie is out of the bag. When the Labour party was fighting to tame the demons of anti-Semitism, the Tories are plunged into disarray over the allegations of Islamophobia. Party Chairman Brandon Lewis and Prime Minister Theresa May are under pressure to expel Boris Johnson, the darling of Tory grassroots, ahead of party conference in September.
Former party chairwoman Baroness Sayeeda Warsi and Lord Mohamed Sheikh, the founder of Conservative Muslim Forum, are seeking the expulsion of Mr Johnson from the party.
In his Daily Telegraph column, Mr Johnson, who quit the government over a soft-Brexit outlined by May in her Chequers blueprint, was commenting on the introduction of a burka ban in Denmark.
He said he felt “fully entitled” to expect women to remove face coverings when talking to him at his MP surgery – and schools and universities should be able to take the same approach if a student “turns up… looking like a bank robber”.
“If you tell me that the burka is oppressive, then I am with you,” he said. “If you say that it is weird and bullying to expect women to cover their faces, then I totally agree – and I would add that I can find no scriptural authority for the practice in the Koran.
“I would go further and say that it is absolutely ridiculous that people should choose to go around looking like letter boxes.”
The former London mayor said businesses and government agencies should be able to “enforce a dress code” that allowed them to see customers’ faces.
Mr Johnson’s remarks exposes his true character. He will go any extend to fulfil his ambition to reach No10. He doesn’t care about the implications of his remarks on the fragile post-Brexit community relations. We are multi-racial and multicultural and we will remain like that for ever. Whoever wanted to lead this country should accept that basic fact.
Prominent Tory veterans from the community like Lord Sheikh said Mr Johnson’s remarks would harm community relations across the country.
“Take the whip from him,” Lord Sheikh said in a Newsnight programme. “Why not? He’s not a super human being, he’s a member of the party. The party chairman, the prime minister has the right to take the whip. It’s not out of order and that’s the thing I’d like to see.”
Mr Johnson is leading in a leadership survey conducted by Conservative Home.
He has stood by his remarks about the burka after the Conservative Party chairman told him to apologise. Prime Ministrer Theresa May is utilising the opportunity to curb the biggest threat to her post. A back-bench Boris is deadlier than one in the cabinet. Especially at the difficult times like Brexit. Mr Johnson is burning the bridges built by David Cameron and others to bring BAME votes to the party fold.
Mr Johnson’s remarks, in a Daily Telegraph article, have provoked criticism from several Muslim groups. In the article, Mr Johnson said full-face veils should not be banned but looked “ridiculous”.
Conservative Party chairman Brandon Lewis said that there had been degree of offence in Mr Johnson’s comments, and called on the former London mayor to apologise.
Baroness Warsi, the first Muslim woman to sit in a British cabinet, welcomed Mr Lewis’s intervention and called for disciplinary action against Mr Johnson if he did not apologise.
She described the remarks as “offensive and deliberately provocative, but very clever politics”.
A debate about the burka should be had “in a serious way”, she said, rather than “trying to get airtime and attention on an issue which he knows will resonate with a certain part of the Tory Party”.
That may be true. Mr Johnson is trying to become a Little Trump in this side of the pond. With little help from new found friend Steve Bannon, a former Donald Trump strategist, Mr Johnson can easily attract the disgruntled far-right. As May is struggling to remain in the seat during a rough Brexit ride, Mr Johnson is trying to appeal to the Conservative Party’s ageing, euro-sceptic and predominantly right-wing membership. His Brexit stance and the right-wing lean could attract hard-core Brexiteers and former UKIPs.
The Old Etonian has sparked many controversies earlier. But the latest one is seem to be snowballing to torpedo his ambition to reach No10. He annoyed almost all the sections in the British society with racist remarks. He called black people “piccaninnies with watermelon smiles”; recently wrote a poem implying the president of Turkey had sex with a goat; annoyed the Americans by saying Barack Obama had a “part-Kenyan” dislike of the British empire; compared the European Union to Hitler; and even recited a colonial poem by Rudyard Kipling in a Myanmar temple.
Prime Minister May is waiting for an apology from Mr Johnson. An action against Mr Johnson may further erode her popularity among the grassroots. But no action will rekindle the memories of old ‘Nasty Party’ tag. It will cost many seats for the party if there is a mid-term polls. As the head of a minority government, May will try to contain threat to her seat and unite the party behind her.