‘We can drive revival of Labour at next election’

Black people were loyal to Labour, yet the Tories still won. But what comes next, asks Lester Holloway

DISAPPOINTMENT: BAME voters backed Corbyn but, like other disappointed voters, ended up with a Tory government as Boris Johnson took 365 parliamentary seats to Labour’s 203

BRITAIN’S AFRICAN and Caribbean voters could be forgiven for demanding an independence referendum like the Scots are doing.

Once again, black Brits overwhelmingly supported Labour but they, like other disappointed voters, have ended up with a Tory government.

Decades of integration has ensured there is not a trace of a black nationalist agenda, so any comparison with Scotland is preposterous. Yet the parallel with the Land of the Brave sheds light on a broken electoral system heavily weighted in favour of middle-class English folk in the Home Counties at the expense of everyone else.

Democracy nerds babble on about how first-past-the-post disadvantages smaller parties and guarantees that the Tories need to win fewer votes per MP than any of their rivals.

But the unfairness is two-fold: the system also benefits the least diverse areas. We only have to look at the December 12 election; Labour held 61 of the 63 most diverse seats yet Boris Johnson’s party emerged with a 78-strong Commons majority.

Here are two more statistics for you – at least 70 per cent of all BAME (black, Asian and minority ethnic) citizens supported Jeremy Corbyn’s party.

The figure is even higher for African and Caribbean voters. And the top 34 constituencies with the highest black populations all remained solidly Labour.


Black communities overwhelmingly stayed loyal, despite all the negativity thrown at Corbyn in the mainstream media.

Yet BAME people didn’t get the government they voted for. Again.

So, what happens now? On the negative side Brexit is inevitable now and with it a rise in xenophobia and racism driven by those who want to declare they have “taken back” their country.

This will only get worse as…

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Comments Form


  1. | Mark Tyson

    You say that 70% of BAME voters supported Labour. So 30% didn’t. In our system we vote as individuals we do not vote as a group. If you wish to form a black party you can do that, you would then represent the people who vote for you and support you. You cannot pretend to speak for black people on the basis of a majority percentage of votes in a general election. Indeed if you truly wanted to speak for black people you would support black people in all their diversity including those who voted for the parties that you do not support.


    • | Lester Holloway

      @MarkTyson the SNP never tire of pointing out that the majority of Scots did not vote for Brexit or the Tories, yet a greater proportion of Scots did than black people. Indeed being black is the greatest determinant of how you will vote than any other characteristic. A 70/30 split in Labour’s favour, in a country with a 70+ Tory majority, is an extraordinary mismatch between the black community and the country at large. I would say large enough to be a political scandal in itself in terms of legitimacy of the government within black communities. I never suggested I spoke for anyone but myself, however we are all entitled to political commentary in a democracy, especially if building a case on the basis of facts.


      • | Mark Tyson

        Thank you for replying. The SNP do seem to have forgotten that the majority of Scots voted in a referendum to remain part of the UK. Nonetheless Scotland is a geographical area, and has an albeit contested, historical attachment to nationhood. Black people in the UK come from diverse countries and backgrounds and hold diverse political views. ‘Black’ is not even a belief system or religion much less a nation. The Labour Party remains the official opposition so Labour voters are still represented. You say that being black is the greatest determinant of how you will vote, there is a correlation, but that is different from a determinant.


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