EXCLUSIVE: Muslim voters may determine next government

24th Dec 2014

Sarmad Hasan

National polls indicate that 33 seats can decide which party forms the next Government. Exclusive research by The Muslim News shows as many as 40 seats are likely to be influenced by “the Muslim vote”. National parties therefore need to understand what the Muslim vote is, and how can it be influenced. Muslim seats

The Muslim vote is complicated, but an Ashcroft poll showed that Muslims mostly care about jobs, the NHS and education. The poll also showed that 50% of Muslims identify with the Labour party, but only 40% voted for Labour in 2010. Labour is in danger of losing its Muslim voters.

To win the Muslim vote the parties need to 1) understand the issues Muslims care about and show how the party addresses them 2) engage with the Muslim community by publicising the party’s policies through hustings, meetings, Muslim national bodies and Muslim media.

With the exception of Bradford West all 40 seats are Labour or high priority Labour targets. Labour must intensify its engagement with an increasingly disenchanted Muslim electorate, while the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats need to exploit that frustration.

Labour needs to stop a repeat of what happened during last General Elections in Dewsbury, a Labour seat since 1987, with a Muslim population of 18.5%. A large number of Muslims felt dissatisfied with the incumbent Labour MP, Shahid Malik. They therefore voted for an independent Muslim candidate to punish Labour. Khizar Iqbal took 3,813 votes. Malik lost to the Conservative candidate by 1526 votes.

On a national level Muslims face a unique challenge on jobs and education, while they share the public sentiment about the NHS.

Recent research based on data from the Office for National Statistics found Muslims are facing the worst job discrimination of any minority group in Britain. Muslim men are 76% less likely to get a job compared to their White-Christian counterparts with similar qualifications. While Muslim women are 65% less likely.

Political parties need to make an effort to understand this frustration and offer level-playing field solutions to the Muslim community.

With the NHS, Muslims want to see a strong NHS that is not threatened by cuts or any other policies that seem intent upon its break-up.

In a recent hustings for Harrow East (one of 25 seats where the Muslim vote is influential) local doctor, Dr Rasha Mezher-Sikafi, summed up the conflict. “Building a shiny new wing at Northwick Park Hospital with no increase in capacity six months before the general election does not fix the underlying problem caused by the closure of other A&E departments within North West London. They need to listen to doctors who work on the front line and understand the facts,” she warned.

With regards to education, Muslims feel that schools where Muslims are the majority are being demonised by the Government.

For full methodology click here

Marginal seats that Muslims can influence

Constituency % of Muslim % Margin of victory
Batley & Spen Labour 18.8% 8.5%
Birmingham Hall Green Labour 46.6% 7.8%
Birmingham Yardley Lib Dem 20.6% 7.3%
Bradford East Lib Dem 36.9% 0.9%
Brent Central Lib Dem 21.2% 3%
Brentford & Isleworth Con 12.5% 3.6%
Dewsbury Con 18.5% 2.8%
Ealing Central & Acton Con 13.4% 7.9%
Enfield North Con 13.5% 3.8%
Halifax Lab 13.5% 3.4%
Harrow East Con 13.0% 7.1%
Harrow West Lab 13.3% 6.8%
Hendon Con 13.9% 0.2%
Keighley Con 13.1% 6.2%
Leyton and Wanstead Lab 22.6% 16%
Luton South Lab 25.3% 5.5%
Manchester Gorton Lab 28.8% 17.5%
Oldham E & Saddleworth Lab 14.2% 10.2%
Pendle Con 17.4% 8%
Peterborough Con 13.7% 10.8%
Poplar & Limehouse Lab 33.6% 12.9%
Rochdale Lab 23.6% 1.9%
Slough Lab 23.8% 12%
Walsall South Lab 18.8% 4.3%
Westminster North Lab 22.6% 3.8%

 

Safe seats that Muslims can influence

Constituency % of Muslims
Bethnal Green and Bow 35.4%
Birmingham, Hodge Hill 52.1%
Birmingham, Ladywood 35.2%
Birmingham, Perry Barr 22.7%
Blackburn 36.3%
Bradford West 51.3%
East Ham 37.4%
Edmonton 24.5%
Ilford South 34.9%
Leicester East 20%
Leicester South 27.8%
Luton North 22.4%
Oldham West and Royton 24.6%
Walthamstow 25.4%
West Ham 26.8%

 

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7 Responses to “EXCLUSIVE: Muslim voters may determine next government”

Iftikhar AhmadJanuary 6, 2015

Politics is a dirty games. All political parties are anti-Islam and anti-Muslims. They are against Masajid and Muslim schools.

According to the 1944 Education Act, children should be educated according to the needs and demands of their parents. The silent majority of Muslim parents would like to send their children to state funded Muslim schools with Muslim teachers. I set up the first Muslim school in 1981 in London now there are 188 Muslim schools and only 18 are state funded. I would like to see each and every Muslim child in a state funded Muslim school. I hope one day my dream would come true.

Stop treating foreigners like garbage and they will stop ruining your precious country. Why did you let them in in the first place if you didn’t want them here? They left everything in their countries because of your promises. Are you so anxious to please that you can’t say “no”? I would love to see you go to a foreign land where you don’t have any friends, you don’t even know anyone and you don’t speak the language, and start from scratch. I would just LOVE to watch you do that. Let them integrate and stop segregating them. What I want is people being nice to each other. I don’t care about race.

Speaking English does not promote integration into British, American and Australian societies, and broaden opportunities. English speaking Muslim youths are angry, frustrated and extremist, thanks to state schools with monolingual non-Muslim teachers and English language. English language is not only a lingua franca but also lingua frankensteinia. Human right are also covers linguistic right. Cultural and linguistic genocide are very common. British schooling is murdering community languages like Arabic, Urdu and others. English is today the world killer language. Linguistic genocide is a crime against humanity and British schooling is guilty of committing this crime. Language is not just a language. It defines one’s culture, identity and consciousness. It defines how we think, communicate and express ourselves. The fact is the most South Asian Muslims have come to know Islam by way of Urdu, the children’s alienation from the language that connects them the heritage of their parents and grandparents is disturbing. As a matter of fact, one has to get to know his mother tongue well if one is to master any other language.

Indiscipline, incivility, binge drinking, drug addiction, gun and knife crimes, teenage pregnancies and abortion are part and parcel of British schooling. These are the reasons why majority of Muslim parents would like to send their children to Muslim schools with Muslim teachers as role models during their developmental periods. Only less than 5% attend Muslim schools and more than 95% keep on attending state and church schools to be mis-educated and de-educated by non-Muslim monolingual teachers.

There are hundreds of state and church schools where Muslim children are in majority. In my opinion, all such schools may be opted out as Muslim Academies. There is no place for a non-Muslim child or a teacher in a Muslim school.
IA
http://www.londonschoolofislamics.org.uk

Reply

Naved SiddiqiJanuary 6, 2015

I couldn’t disagree more with Iftikhar Ahmad, whose stark portrayal of a “them” and “us” society could have been written by Nick Griffin if we substitute some of the terminology and names.

He writes: “Stop treating (US) foreigners (???) like garbage and THEY will stop ruining YOUR precious country. Why did YOU let THEM in in the first place if YOU didn’t want THEM here? THEY left everything in THEIR countries because of YOUR promises.

Mmmm. We are 3 or 4 generations on from there now…

I don’t believe it is constructive nor healthy to speak of the “Muslim Vote” as a bloc initiative. Our votes should rather be a national vote in the “general” national interest, with one’s personal concerns and private convictions driving it. Yes, there happen to be 1 million+ voting citizens who are (in a variety of ways) also Muslims.

In fact EVERY parliamentary seat in our democracy, even the most remote seat in the rural wilderness, has some registered Muslim voters within its boundary, albeit often the number is really small. This is a little known fact that should be celebrated, and spoken about sensibly.

Let the national General Election be just that: general and national. And also a privilege.

No it won’t weave magic, but democracy is better than its alternative: one form or another of inevitable civil war.

NS

Reply

Sajjad shahJanuary 7, 2015

Please don’t go saperate way we live in this country,we have more freedom here than our own countries, why spoil it.
Let each individual do his or her own thinking. I for one do not want to be associated with only one party. I will vote which ever party is good for this country, and good for my business as mine and my children’s future is with this.

Reply

AngelaJanuary 9, 2015

“There is no place for a non-Muslim child or a teacher in a Muslim school.”

There’s the pot calling the kettle black. Communal segregation, separation, isolation, non-integration and extremism are a given result if what you call for happens. May this never happen! Make your choice, integration into a state school and enjoying all the benefits of your host nation, where YOU take responsibility for teaching the historic language of your family or go ‘home’. If I choose to send my child to a private school for religious or privilege reasons then I don’t expect the state to pay for it (when the state already provides more than adequate funded education), neither should you! ESPECIALLY if that choice appears to foster segregation and isolation. Get real. If ‘home’ life is untenable then why are you trying so hard to import it?

Reply

GlennJanuary 16, 2015

My post appears to have been deleted, why? The Muslim Council of Britain says “Muslims do believe in freedom of speech. And they do respect the right for people to say what they believe to be correct” It appears to me that you do not want any of your biased propaganda pieces challenged and suppress criticism while constantly portraying Britain and the western democracies in as negative a light as possible.

Reply

Tetsu De RothchildFebruary 2, 2015

I saw opposition to us and them and i agree but if we muslims can use our vote to achieve our agenda i see nothing wrong with that. I sence anger when i read comments like if you dont like it go home. Well egypt stated the gold was cursed yet it was removed and brought to the uk to attract tourism. You see the curse is immigration. Where the money goes migrants follow. As for the politics like i said we are all looking after our own interest. The `muslim` patrols in brick lane are apposing prostitution for example. Should we not stop illigal activities? Its funny go to school and fall for the peer pressure into drug habits etc. I dont want my children going through that. Its my right to seek a safe environment for my childs learning. Be it a muslim or secular school.

Reply

Usama TahirMarch 7, 2015

Angela- isolation, segregation doesn’t breed extremism. Ignorance does.
The reason for having separate schools is to preserve Muslim identity and values and to instil a world view based on social justice, caring for and supporting the weak and oppressed, charity in prosperity and adversity, preserving chastity, respecting the elders, serving our parents especially mothers, to consider wealth as a duty to support the needy with and not your own to dispense with it as you wish, to consider the environment as a trust from God, to hurt no-one with ones words or force, to refrain from violence, to forgive when asked for forgiveness, to fulfil covenants at all costs, to consider oneself accountable to God for speech and actions, to speak the truth and what is right though it’s unpopular, to refrain from lying unless to reconcile between people, to not mock anyone, to stand firm for justice even against oneself and relatives, to believe that no-one is superior to another except by good action and piety of the heart, to purify intentions before any action, to consider your neighbours as most entitled to receive your good, not giving in order to have more, to not boast, be extravagant or wasteful, to not consume beyond ones needs and to give what is beyond our needs to charity, to give others their rights before taking yours, to give to charity from the best of ones belongings, to regard the dignity the property and blood of another Muslim as inviolable, to not tolerate violation of the dignity, property, or life of any human being especially women, to use ones strength to support the weak and not to usurp public property…
The list goes on.
Do you really think that’s bad for 21st century society? Surely deforestation, global warming capitalist brutality, consumerism, racism, gender inequality, wars, poverty would disappear if everyone adopted Muslim values?

Reply

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