The Conservatives’ Sayeeda Warsi is under fire this morning after declaring that she didn’t want to see more Muslim MPs, because “Muslims that go to parliament don’t have any morals or principles”.
Next Left, which broke the story, reports that Warsi’s comments were included in an unpublished Times story by the reporters Andrew Norfolk, Tom Baldwin and Richard Ford.
The full comments by Warsi, which were made in a speech at a Yorkshire dinner in honour of the president of Kashmir, were:
[He] says we need more Muslim MPs, more Muslims in the House of Lords. I would actually disagree with that, because one of the lessons we have learnt in the last five years in politics is that Muslims that go to parliament don’t have any morals or principles.
It would seem that the Tory peer, who is a practising Muslim and the shadow minister for community cohesion, has rather a lot of explaining to do. The Times report notes that there are more than 80 Muslim candidates standing in tomorrow’s election, including several Tories in winnable seats.
Baroness Warsi is quoted as saying that her original remarks were mistranslated and taken “completely out of context”, which seems a rather insufficient defence.
Let’s hope we get a response from the Times and David Cameron later today.