Tories ‘urgently investigating’ after MP uses N-word at public event
The Conservative party said it is urgently investigating one of its MPs after she used the N-word at an event while talking about Brexit.
Anne Marie Morris, the MP for Newton Abbot in Devon, was recorded casually using the term at the East India Club in London, where she was appearing on a panel to talk about Brexit alongside Tory colleagues Bill Cash and John Redwood.
“Now I’m sure there will be many people who’ll challenge that, but my response and my request is look at the detail, it isn’t all doom and gloom,” she said.
“Now we get to the real nigger in the woodpile which is in two years what happens if there is no deal?”
Tulip Siddiq, the Labour MP for Hampstead and Kilburn, expressed her disgust in a tweet and asked if the prime minister would take action:
Tim Farron, the outgoing Lib Dem leader, called for Morris to lose the Tory whip.
“This disgusting comment belongs in the era of the Jim Crow laws and has no place in our parliament,” he said.
“The Conservative party should withdraw the whip from Anne Marie Morris and they should do it today. Every hour they leave her in place, is a stain on them and the so called ‘compassionate conservatism’ they supposedly espouse.
“I am utterly shocked that this person represents the good people of Newton Abbott. Even if she misspoke this is the nastiest thing I’ve heard an MP utter since Lord Dixon-Smith uttered the same awful phrase a few years ago.”
Caroline Lucas, co-leader of the Green party, also called on the Tories to remove the whip.
Appalling. Should have the whip removed immediately. No place in our politics for racism, full stop. https://t.co/khnbjFUVGi
Morris said: “The comment was totally unintentional. I apologise unreservedly for any offence caused.”
A Conservative spokesman said: “We are aware of these reports, this kind of language is completely unacceptable, and we are urgently investigating.”
Earlier this year, Morris distanced herself from comments made by her electoral agent and partner, Roger Kendrick, who told a hustings event that “the crisis in education was due entirely to non-British born immigrants and their high birth rates”.
In response Morris told DevonLive: “I don’t share the views expressed by Roger Kendrick.”
One person at the Brexit event contacted the Guardian because he was so shocked about what he had heard Morris say.
“I attended in a professional capacity with a colleague,” he said. “I work in financial services and was there to hear about the report on enhanced equivalence being published.
“I was completely taken aback after hearing such a vile and offensive phrase being used by someone in public life, who should be campaigning against such language being used, not dispensing it herself.”