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BAME support for Tories “at lowest level for 16 years”

PLUMMETING SUPPORT: Prime Minister Theresa May

DESPITE CLAIMS in recent years that the Conservatives are increasing their share of the black vote, ethnic minority support for the party is at its lowest level for over a decade The Times reports.

The paper says that new 10 Downing Street Chief of Staff Gavin Barwell has been giving presentations to MPs over the past two weeks, detailing its standing with BAME communities.

According to internal party memos the party’s stance on immigration to blame for the party’s lowest standing among minority voters for sixteen years.

BACKWARDS

One MP who attended the presentations said: “We made big strides under Cameron. For reasons of image, not policy, it seems to have gone backwards.”

Another senior party figure said: “We’ve been told that BME support is down to 2001 levels, when Iain Duncan Smith was leader. It’s that bad.”

The private polling showed that BME voters identified with Conservative values such as freedom and choice and caring for future generations, but would not vote Tory.

BAME voters are much more likely to vote for Labour, with data from the 2017 election showing that the Conservatives only achieved 17 per cent of the ethnic minority vote, which is down from 21 per cent in 2015.

The findings come despite a recent pledge from Prime Minister Theresa May to tackle racial discrimination in Britain in areas such as the criminal justice system, education and employment.

In an exclusive interview with The Voice earlier this year, Mrs May said that the audit was a starting point for tackling inequality and that it would be more than a mere talking exercise.

She said: “It’s my intention that what makes this report different is you will see action coming out if it. On the day that we launched the audit a number of groups who have been working in the equality area challenged me to act on and rightly so. It is all very well producing this review. But when I say we will work to drive real and meaningful change I mean it.”

IMAGE

However her image among minority voters has been tainted by some of the controversial decisions she took while Home Secretary.

The controversial ‘Go Home’ campaign saw her department pay for billboard vans encouraging illegal immigrants to “go home” to be driven around areas with a high minority ethnic population.

She also pledged to cut immigration to the tens of thousands, and has refused to remove students from the overall immigration figures.

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