Socialist Worker

Eric Pickles fans racist stereotypes on voter fraud

Issue No. 2517

Tory MP Eric Pickles

Tory MP Eric Pickles (Pic: Department for Communities and Local Government)

Tory MP Eric Pickles said that authorities are “turning a blind eye” to election fraud among Muslims in a new government report published last Friday.

Pickles’ report is another racist attack on Muslims in Britain.

It claims fraud takes place “especially in communities of Pakistani and Bangladeshi background” and is ignored because of “over-sensitivities about ethnicity and religion”.

The report was commissioned after the Tories led a racist witch hunt to oust former London Tower Hamlets mayor Lutfur Rahman.

Rahman, running for the left wing Tower Hamlets First, had beaten the Labour candidate in 2014.

The Tories sent in commissioners, who still run the east London borough, and an electoral court found Rahman was involved in corrupt electoral practices.

Pickles plays to racist stereotypes about Muslims and has recommended that trying to influence people’s voting intentions because of their religions should be banned.

This is based on the racist idea that Muslims are a homogenous mass simply influenced by “community leaders”.

Pickles also called for officials at polling stations to be banned from speaking any language other than English.

The report’s recommendations clamp down on Muslims—and could drive more people away from voting.

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