Sadiq Khan has crossed the pond, carrying a message of “building bridges rather than walls” – a clear reciprocation for Obama’s “back of the queue” visit to London. And in a lurid show of support for Hillary Clinton’s collapsing presidential campaign, he goaded Trump on his own turf.
This is very much typical of Sadiq Khan. A self-confessed feminist, who went on record as saying “I don’t think anyone should tell women what they can and can’t wear”, whilst supporting burkinis, which are deemed by many to symbolise the oppression of women, and banning pictures of bikini-clad women from London’s public transport. He could be a man of many contradictions, but perhaps he is just pushing his own agenda.
His voting pattern is equally patchy, but could be explained by him towing the Labour party line. For example, despite being a “proud Muslim”, to the point of referring to moderates as “Uncle Toms”, he voted for British involvement in the Bush-Blair Iraq intervention.
Later on, and in spite of admitting the Iraq War was a mistake, he also voted against the investigation into this war. And of course, Sadiq Khan proved not to trust the British people to make the right decision by voting against the referendum on UK’s membership of the EU. He also voted against measures to reduce tax avoidance.
With regards to his general strategy, there appears to be a lack of any clear continuity or direction. Sadiq Khan nominated the present failure of a Labour Party leader, more akin to Frank Spencer than a real politician, before declaring that “Jeremy Corbyn must go”. Then again, this might just be his means of hedging his political career.
Indeed, the one clear theme that transpires is political opportunism – Sadiq Khan failed his Tooting constituency by embarking on his London mayoral campaign only 6 days after being re-elected in the general election. Meanwhile, Tooting suffered years of neglect by its elected politicians, Sadiq Khan being its MP for over a decade.
Judging by the documented mismanagement of his former constituency, I certainly don’t think that the opportunistic Sadiq Khan can be trusted with London, and I definitely would not expect him to deliver on any bridges, walls or anything else for that matter. Furthermore, the timing of his trip is equally dubious as that of Barack Obama’s visit to London during the Brexit referendum campaign.
Perhaps he will help sink Hillary Clinton’s campaign in a similarly spectacular fashion.