A Brexit-supporting Labour MP says most ethnic minority voters are backing Remain in the upcoming European Union (EU) referendum because the Leave campaign is “racist” for mentioning immigration in the debate, and that ethnic minority voters are “horrified” at opposition against Turkey joining the EU.
Khalid Mahmood (above, centre) said he first realised he couldn’t “be any part of” the mainstream, non-partisan Leave groups at the point where the Electoral Commission was considering “which would be the [official] Leave campaign”. He said that “everybody, literally” supporting Brexit was “trying to hit the racist issues”.
Mr. Mahmood claimed that in this period, both Vote Leave and Grassroots Out “decided that they were going to concentrate on immigration on a very, very negative basis… and trying to push and frighten people away on the issue of migration”.
Ironically, Vote Leave was actually criticised by several experts during the campaign to be the voice of Brexit for shying away from discussing immigration. As Breitbart London reported, the country’s most successful political strategist, Tory election winner Sir Lynton Crosby, warned that Leave would lose unless it made immigration and its effect on the NHS a central part of the campaign.
On BBC’s Newsnight, Mr. Mahmood contended that the Leave campaign’s mentioning of migration has resulted in most of the BAME (black, Asian and minority ethnic) community being “pushing very much towards In Europe [sic]”.
The BBC reported that “unlike the [UK’s] white population, who are pretty evenly split on Leave and Remain”, two thirds of “BAME” voters wish to remain in the EU.
Asked whether the Labour politician felt Vote Leave’s tactics with regards to immigration were “divisive”, he said as well as mentioning migration Vote Leave’s “failure” to “put forward the economic case” has damaged their campaign. Apparently ignoring the existence of ‘Economists for Brexit’, Mr. Mahmood also claimed the Leave campaign had “failed to put forward any credible academic studies” which economically support Brexit.
Asked about an advert warning voters that if Britain votes to remain in the EU 76 million Turks will gain full access to Britain, Mr. Mahmood claimed the “BAME” community were “totally horrified and appalled” by the “really negative, abysmal” advert saying: “This is what makes people really frightened of their own status in this country”.
The MP claimed that the advert would “isolate people” and “make them feel” like the Turks alluded to in the posters.
The Eurosceptic Labour MP also said that Leave campaigner Boris Johnson “has a lot to answer for with regards to racist remarks,” one of which was the “totally racist,” according to Mr. Mahmood, “exploration of Obama’s heritage”.
The remark he referred to was Mr. Johnson’s assertion that the “part-Kenyan” President Obama has a grudge against Britain. The reference to the American president’s heritage was relevant as the grudge is allegedly due to his Kenyan grandfather’s torture at the hands of the British after the Mau Mau rebellion.
Mr. Mahmood implied that the Leave campaign pointing to mass migration from Europe as a negative aspect of EU membership makes little sense with regards to ‘BAME’ voters.
The vast majority of people affected by open borders within the EU are not from ethnic minorities. However, there are exceptions: tens of thousands of migrants granted asylum by other EU countries and their offspring do move permanently to Britain. Notably, a staggering 20,000 Somalis granted asylum and later naturalised as citizens in the Netherlands in the mid to late 1990s had migrated to Britain by 2004 — over half their total in the Netherlands.
A Guardian opinion piece claimed that Somalis migrating to Britain from EU countries did so because there are “better opportunities”. But The Telegraph revealed that Somali migrants in the UK from Europe said they did so because Britain “lets [them] stay as [they are]” and “without [them] losing their cultural identity”. The Telegraph also reported that Somalis felt “bullied” in the Netherlands by an assimilation policy that bars them from creating “ghettos”.
In as little as three years Germany may be granting citizenship to the more than one million migrants who entered the country last year after illegally migrating to Europe by boat — if they are shown to be “making an effort” in learning to speak the German language.