Coffee House Shots

How damaging is the Tory Islamophobia report?

11 min listen

Islamophobia ‘remains a problem’ in the Conservative party, a report has found. Professor Swaran Singh, who analysed more than a thousand complaints of misconduct for his investigation, said that some Tories needed a ‘completely new mindset’.

Boris Johnson himself gave evidence to the inquiry, and when asked about his column saying a group of black people had ‘watermelon smiles’ said: ‘Would I use some of the offending language from my past writings today? Now that I am prime minister, I would not.’

On the podcast, James Forsyth says: ‘There’s an interesting question now about whether Boris Johnson goes further. Normally he is very reluctant to get drawn into specific newspaper articles.’

And one year on from Dominic Cummings’s extraordinary press conference in the No. 10 rose garden, Katy Balls asks Isabel Hardman about how his trip to Barnard Castle changed the course of Boris Johnson’s government.

Isabel says: ‘It definitely changed a lot of people’s attitudes towards the guidance and the reliability of the government.

‘A lot of Cabinet ministers will be wishing they had been more clear-sighted in their defence of Dominic Cummings given that they are now all bracing themselves for him to go all guns blazing in this committee hearing tomorrow.’


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