gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra
ip stresser
Scrolling news:

Muslim voter impact: 2024 local elections spooking establishment and bigots alike

31st May 2024
Muslim voter impact: 2024 local elections spooking establishment and bigots alike

Abu Yusra Chowdhury

The local elections saw significant participation from Muslim voters, notably impacting results in key races in England and Wales. While the national picture has been overwhelmingly positive for the Labour Party, riding on widespread dissatisfaction with the Conservative Party, this has not been entirely reflected in British Muslim sentiment.

In Oldham, where Muslims constitute around 24% of the population, and in Kirklees, where they make up about 14%, Labour lost control of the councils as independents and the Greens made gains.

This shift was indicative of a broader trend where Muslim voters, disillusioned with Labour’s stance on issues like the Gaza conflict, opted for alternative candidates and parties. The “Gaza effect” is said to have significantly influenced Muslim voters’ decisions in the 2024 local elections, particularly impacting the Labour Party.

Dissatisfaction stemmed from Sir Keir Starmer’s comments in October 2023, where he appeared to defend Israeli actions against Gaza. This stance alienated many Muslim voters, who felt their concerns were dismissed.

According to an analysis by Number Cruncher Politics for ITV News, Labour lost 33 percentage points of vote share in areas with a majority Muslim population in these elections. Their analysis indicates that in wards with over 70% Muslim representation, Labour lost 39 percentage points of vote share.

In the West Midlands, despite a significant decline in Conservative votes, Labour’s Richard Parker narrowly defeated incumbent Andy Street with a majority of just 1,508 votes. Additionally, independent candidate Akhmed Yakoob secured 11.7% of the vote, reflecting a divided Muslim vote and highlighting that while Muslim voters were influential in certain areas, their impact was not uniformly cohesive.

The reaction among political parties to the Muslim vote was swift. Richard Parker recognized the need to better engage with Muslim voters and committed to addressing their concerns. Labour MP Jess Phillips also noted the significant loss of Muslim support and urged for deeper engagement with these communities to understand and address their grievances.

However, the analysis remains inconclusive in other areas with large Muslim populations, as both Sadiq Khan in London and Andy Burnham in Greater Manchester increased their vote shares.

Khan secured nearly 44% of the vote, an increase from his previous term, with notable gains in traditionally Conservative areas such as West Central, including Westminster, Kensington and Chelsea, and Hammersmith and Fulham. This increase was attributed to Khan’s policies on free school meals, housing, and environmental issues. Burnham also saw a rise in his vote share, benefiting from high turnout in traditionally Labour-leaning areas, which solidified his position in Greater Manchester. Notably, both Khan and Burnham called for a ceasefire in Gaza earlier than their party leader.

The elections also marked several “firsts,” with Brighton electing Mohammed Asaduzzaman as its first Muslim mayor, Councillor Syeda Khatun MBE becoming Sandwell’s first female Muslim mayor, and Solihull appointing Shahin Ashraf MBE to the same position. These milestones underscore the increasing political representation of Muslims in local governance.

 

Reactionaries Spooked by Muslim Voters

 

The impact of Muslim votes has drawn out divisive and Islamophobic reactions. When Labour’s victory was uncertain, an anonymous Labour source controversially suggested that “it’s the Middle East, not the West Midlands, that will have won Street the mayoralty; once again, Hamas are the real villains.” This echoed another unnamed Labour source who likened Muslim voters to ‘fleas’ last year.

Speaking to the Daily Mail, Brexiteer and former Tory Cabinet Minister Sir Jacob Rees-Mogg complained that “people are entitled to their views, but foreign affairs is a matter for the House of Commons, not local councils.” Of course, such stridency seemed absent when the UK Independence Party made significant gains in previous local elections, particularly the 2014 poll.

The Brexit activist Nigel Farage claimed that “Sectarian politics is here to stay. We now have Islamic voting in Britain, which over the course of the next decade will give Labour a very, very big headache.”

Meanwhile, in London, failed mayoral candidate Laurence Fox took to X to allege a Muslim takeover of the UK. He repeated several false claims, such as many mayors being Muslim.

Despite being debunked by sources like Full Fact, these claims were reposted by X owner Elon Musk and shared 22 million times. This narrative even reached the US Congress, where Representative Chip Roy complained on the floor of the House of Representatives that “you’ve got a massive Muslim takeover of the United Kingdom going on right before our eyes.”

Other commentators are now advocating for the Labour Party to ignore Muslim democratic sentiment. Writing in the Telegraph, Charles Moore advised Labour to maintain its support for Israel, warning against aligning with Muslim voters: “Labour insiders are more aware than most voters of the danger of the weird alliance between punitive Muslim extremists who believe women are inferior, homosexuals should be killed, etc., and the usually white hard-left Corbynites whose social agenda is completely different but share Islamist hatred of Israel and the West.”

 

Bring on the General Election

 

With the Labour Party well ahead in the polls, it remains to be seen whether the impact Muslim voters have had on the local elections will be translated into the General Election, set to take place at some point this year. There are also concerns as to whether Muslims will be the victims of right-wing and Conservative Party electioneering, doubling down on Islamophobia and anti-Muslim tropes to accuse the Labour Party of being in league with Muslims. No other minority community is subject to this projection as British Muslims are.

Reacting to the results, the Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Britain, Zara Mohammed, said: “The dissatisfaction with politicians is palpable, and the response to the atrocities in Gaza is only the tip of the iceberg. Instead of respectful and meaningful dialogue, British Muslims face a political culture dominated by ideologues silencing their voices, questioning their intentions, or having their views filtered through acceptable gatekeepers. Now that Muslims have exercised their British values by taking part in our democracy, they now face further demonisation.”

Photo: Tory Cabinet Minister Sir Jacob Rees-Mogg, Brexit activist Nigel Farage, and failed mayoral candidate Laurence Fox, each having ironically campaigned for right-wing protest votes in the past, seemed to raise concerns or express disapproval of Muslims exercising their right to protest vote during the local elections. (Credit: Wikimedia)

 

READ MORE GENERAL ELECTION RELATED COVERAGE

Concern over Islamophobia as PM announces General Election date

Editorial: Khan wins third term as Mayor of London against odds

Editorial: Muslims’ “issue voting” rattles Establishment

Historic milestones: First Muslim mayors in Brighton, Sandwell, and Solihull

EXCLUSIVE: Over 150 Muslim councillors elected

The Tories & British Muslims: A decade of discord

Leave a Comment

What is 9 + 8 ?
Please leave these two fields as-is:
IMPORTANT! To be able to proceed, you need to solve the following simple math (so we know that you are a human) :-)

Over 120 people attended a landmark conference on the media reporting of Islam and Muslims. It was held jointly by The Muslim News and Society of Editors in London on September 15.

The Muslim News Awards for Excellence 2015 was held on March in London to acknowledge British Muslim and non-Muslim contributions to the society.

The Muslim News Awards for Excellence 2015 was held on March in London to acknowledge British Muslim and non-Muslim contributions to the society.

The Muslim News Awards for Excellence event is to acknowledge British Muslim and non-Muslim contributions to society. Over 850 people from diverse background, Muslim and non-Muslim, attended the gala dinner.

Latest Tweets


sınır değer hesapla


download software

gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra gra