By Adam McGregor.
Things are not looking good for Rishi Sunak.
But what does the Conservative Party need to do to overcome the odds in 2024? Adam McGregor has some suggestions.
Beset by the customary accusations of ‘Tory sleaze’ (the most recent episode being Nadhim Zahawi’s murky tax affairs), as well as new evidence in the bullying probe of Dominic Raab, Sunak’s misfortune was compounded by a fine of up to £500 for neglecting to wear a seatbelt.
Fury continues to rage over the perception of indifference towards the ongoing crisis on the southern coast of England, with more hotels being filled by the Home Office with – predominantly – young men.
The recently-released census statistics, showing many of England’s major cities to now be minority-White British, and the record-high net migration figures, have also caused much alarm.
Opinion polls have been steadfast in projecting a Labour landslide, possibly besting that of 1997.
So what can Sunak do to win in 2024?
- Exit the 1951 Refugee Convention. As with the (unsuccessful) Rwanda policy, this would prove to be an immensely popular move. The patience of the British public has been tested by this saga, with a feeling of their generosity being abused;
- Ensure that the British Bill of Rights, which is to replace the Human Rights Act 1998, does not permit any abuse by foreign criminals and their left-wing lawyers;
- Finally curb legal immigration. Annual net migration figures in the hundreds of thousands is simply unacceptable and untenable, especially considering the current state of the NHS;
- Capitalise on Labour’s weaknesses, their Achilles’ heel being the transgenderism issue. It is plain that virtually all of the Shadow Cabinet, and many of their MPs, are unable to define the word ‘woman’. This is absurd, and must be highlighted. Culture war issues like left-wing support for the renaming of streets and buildings, and the dissemination of fake or distorted history, must also be engaged;
- Remove all state funds from diversity, equity, and inclusivity initiatives, which are divisive and deeply racist towards both white people and ethnic minorities;
- Reform hate crime legislation to protect ‘gender-critical’ – i.e., mainstream, objectively true, and upheld for thousands of years – opinions from prosecution;
- Introduce an active education policy, particularly preventing the radicalisation of children with sex education in the early years of primary school, the teaching of transgender and racial dogma in classrooms, and the teaching of postmodernism vis-à-vis English literature and history. This has proved highly successful for Ron DeSantis, Governor of Florida;
- Return to the tried-and-tested policing strategy of ‘Bobbies on the beat’. Again, this would be an enormously popular policy, given the recent antipathy towards the police, who are seen as too remote and devoting an inordinate amount of time to online offences;
- Remove the requirement for a university degree to undertake nurse training, to try to boost staff numbers, and scrap the limit on university intake for doctors-to-be;
- Defund the BBC. The state broadcaster is clearly beyond reform, and widely disliked.
Of course, on the economic front, inflation is well above the Bank of England’s target, strikes are grinding the nation to a halt, and the British economy as a whole is expected to shrink this year – the only major economy predicted to do so by the IMF.
Economic competence is a separate matter altogether, and critical to winning elections, but the aforementioned conservative points – often overlooked, as the party has become progressively more liberal since Margaret Thatcher – are ones that Sunak would be well-advised to embrace.
Otherwise it may well ensue that the Conservatives, given the political persuasion of the younger generations, will never govern again.
Adam McGregor is currently doing an MA in Politics and International Relations at the University of Keele. Follow him on Twitter here.