The Tories held their first ever "gay summit", but if you think this showed a new and caring party, think again. Not only did hardly any Tory MPs turn up to the event, Michael Howard didn't bother to attend either. Hardly surprising, given that it was the new Tory leader who introduced Section 28. In any case, Howard was probably too busy planning the next stage of his attack on immigrants.
I don't know what turns my stomach more, the son of an immigrant using public fears to stoke racism or Labour pandering to racists by being "tough" on immigration. But it was no surprise that a Foreign Office official in Bucharest should choose the Tory party to leak his vile accusations that present immigration is "the tip of the iceberg". My experience with FO staff abroad is that most of them are Tories. I hope this one gets sacked.
This latest leak will be music to the ears of tabloid editors running campaigns against all foreigners, whether asylum-seekers, immigrants or supporters of the EU. It seems to have escaped these xenophobes that Britain has a labour shortage. Wouldn't it be great if all immigrants went on strike in protest at the racist crap they have to read in the papers every day? Howard may "scab", but the country would grind to a halt.
Yet that won't bother the Tories, who think they can get the immigration minister out of office - and they're not the only ones. "We've got Beverley Hughes in our sights and we're out to get her," one tabloid hack told me. So far David Blunkett has backed Hughes, but it's Tony Blair's backing that really counts. Let's hope she gets more support than previous ministers hounded by the media.