In 2005, one of the Conservatives’ election slogans, ‘it’s not racist to talk about immigration’, was widely condemned as, er, racist. While the slogan itself wasn’t racist, the implication was that it was an attempt to lure more anti-immigration voters back to the Conservatives by suggesting that the time had come to crack down.
Yet three years on, that slogan looks positively tame by comparison with the tabloid-pleasing anti-immigrant stances taken by the Conservative and Labour parties these days. Immigrants now vie with Muslims and youths for the title of most vilified group of the day. So it was refreshing to see that Boris Johnson has called for a nationwide amnesty for illegal immigrants, subject to conditions. Yes, there are issues with an amnesty, and the Tory front bench have condemned these proposals, but isn’t it nice to hear a high profile politician standing up for immigrants, rather than attacking them in order to get his or her name in the Sun?
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Filed in: Current affairs,London Politics