Conservative Party ‘modernisers’ have launched their manifesto today with an attack on immigration controls and a call for the legalisation of heroin. The call came from Ian Birrell, a Guardian journalist, who worked for David Cameron in 2010.
Mr Birrell dedicated most of his speech to calling for the legalisation of all drugs, claiming the policy could return the Conservatives to popularity. He also lamented that the party was unpopular with “young people and ethnic minorities”.
The former speechwriter then went on to suggest that Britain was wrong to use visas to prohibit widespread immigration. He said: “In London one in three people are not born in Britain, and I think that’s what makes it a wonderful, vibrant place.
“Africa is the fastest growing market for champagne in the world, but our visa system makes it impossible for Nigerians to come to the country. We all know that the Visa system also makes it hard for Indians to study in the UK.
He went on to attack the Tea Party in the USA, saying: “The tea party want the world to stop so they can get off. We all know who the British Tea Party is, and it’s not the Conservative Party.”
His comments are believed to be a reference to UKIP (and maybe even Breitbart London!), who have become popular amongst disaffected Conservatives.
The meeting at the House of Commons was attended by around 80 Conservatives including a handful of Members of Parliament. A series of speakers took to the platform to attack the concept that modernisers should be known as ‘wet’, like they had been in the 1980s.
Also at the event was Former Defence Secretary Dr Liam Fox who began his speech by assuring the crowd that he was a “Thatcherite” and a “Unionist” but believed that the Conservatives had to be a “broad church”.
Dr Fox said: “The Conservatives are strongest when we are a board church. Margaret Thatcher’s best result was in 1979 when the party represented the views of everyone from Keith Joseph to Jim Prior”. Joseph was always seen as the leader of the right of the party, whilst Prior the left.
He continued: “Artificially pushing the party in one direction or another is counter-productive…. This pigeon holing of people as wet and dry is depressing.”
He then went on to compare modernisation to medicine: “Modernisation takes me back to my days in medical school studying Darwin. You must evolve or die, that is as true in politics as it is in medicine.”
Fox’s attendance will surprise many, especially following his attack on the moderniser agenda just last month. A Breitbart London exclusive in March revealed that Fox criticised the “modernisation project” within the Tory Party, claiming that “far too much of the modernisation project has been concerned with what people who won’t ever vote for us think.”
Other speakers at the event included Jeremy Mayhew from the City of London, who said Conservatives must “reflect the diversity of modern Britain” and another former Cameron advisor, Sam Worth said the Conservatives “had a whiff about them”.
Worth claimed that the Conservatives seemed untrustworthy and people still questioned their motives. The Modernisers’ Manifesto was published by a group called Bright Blue, led by Ryan Shorthouse, a former aide to disgraced Tory MP Maria Miller.