Abbott Sounds Alarm Over Conservative Party’s Alleged Race-Baiting Tactics

Diane Abbott has accused the Conservative Party of exploiting racial tensions ahead of the general election, citing abusive remarks and policy manoeuvres as evidence of a concerning trend in British politics. Here’s the full story.


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Diane Abbott, the UK’s longest-serving black MP, has levied accusations against the Conservative Party, alleging that they were intending to “play the race card” to exploit racial tensions in the lead-up to the general election. 

Abusive Remarks

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Abbott, writing in the Guardian, said that the abusive remarks made by Tory donor Frank Hester had exemplified this approach. 

“I Think She Should Be Shot”

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According to the Guardian, during a meeting in 2019, Hester reportedly expressed his deep disdain towards Abbott, stating, “It’s like trying not to be racist but you see Diane Abbott on the TV, and you’re just like I hate, you just want to hate all black women because she’s there, and I don’t hate all black women at all, but I think she should be shot.”

“Upset but Not Surprised”

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Abbott expressed that she was “upset but not surprised” at Hester’s remarks and that many years of being one of Britain’s most high-profile black politicians had left her “hardened to racist abuse.”

Return £10 Million

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Following the publishing of Hester’s remarks, both Labour and the Liberal Democrats called for the Conservative Party to return £10 million Hester had donated to the Conservative Party.

“Abusive Emails”

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In her Guardian piece, Abbott stated, “I receive hundreds of abusive emails, phone calls and letters monthly, and the numbers shoot up whenever I am in the media.”

“Go Back to Where You Come From”

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She continued: “Much of this targets my appearance, questions my intelligence and features classic racist lines such as: ‘Go back to where you come from.’”

Holding Labour Accountable

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Beyond condemning just the Conservatives, Abbott also held Labour accountable for failing to address internal instances of abuse directed at her. 

“Overt and Underlying Racism and Sexism”

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Despite a 2022 report by Martin Forde QC, which showed that Abbott had been the target of “overt and underlying racism and sexism” from within Labour’s ranks, she asserts that no formal apology has been offered to her, either by individual staffers or the party itself. 

Economic Failure

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However, most of Abbott’s ire was directed at the Conservatives, who she said were facing scrutiny over the perceived failure of their economic policies. 

“The Tories Are Desperate”

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Returning to the topic of the upcoming election, Abbott wrote: “But as the election draws nearer, and Labour stays 20 points ahead in the polls, the Tories are desperate. Their political trump card has always been low taxes and the sound management of the economy.”

“The Race Card”

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She continued, “But Liz Truss blew out of water any claim the Tories had superior economic competence, and taxation is now at its highest sustained level on record. So the only card the Tories have left to play is the race card, and they are going to play it ruthlessly.”

Pivoting to Extremism

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Abbott pointed to specific policies, such as the Rwanda deportation scheme, as well as the Conservative’s recent pivot to discussing extremism, as proof that the party was not above using racist dog whistles to gain votes. 

“A Code Word for Muslims”

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Abbott stated that what she saw as the Conservatives feigned apprehension over extremism was in response to the left seemingly gaining widespread support in the UK and that extremism was also “a code word for Muslims.”

Support for Police

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Abbott stressed her support of the Metropolitan police in their recent treatment of pro-Palestinian activism in the capital. 

“Islamophobic Narrative”

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Still, she added, “The Tories’ underlying Islamophobic narrative demands that they continue to complain about the forces of law and order. It’s an unusual position for Conservative politicians.”

“Sad and Strange”

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Despite facing disciplinary action from Labour over a controversial letter in which she appeared to downplay racism against Jewish people, Abbott stated, “It will be both sad and strange if Starmer throws Britain’s first black woman MP out of the PLP [parliamentary Labour party] because of an eight-line letter, for which I immediately apologized.”

“Anti-Racist Tradition”

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She continued: “But the most important thing is that the Labour Party holds fast to its anti-racist tradition, and is prepared to fight racism and Islamophobia at all times and in all places.”

Ongoing Struggle

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Diane Abbott’s accusations against the Tories underscore the ongoing struggle against racial discrimination, which is all too common in British politics.

Battle for Votes

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As the election draws ever nearer, the battle for votes is likely to become bloodier, and both parties need to ensure that the need to win over voters spirals into overt racism like the kind Hester allegedly displayed. 

Confront and Combat Racism

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Abbott’s calls for accountability from the Conservative Party and her Labour colleagues reflect a broader imperative to confront and combat racism at all levels of society.

The post Abbott Sounds Alarm Over Conservative Party’s Alleged Race-Baiting Tactics first appeared on Swift Feed.

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