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Tory culture warrior in chief Suella Braverman isn’t known for being a moderate. Her brand of Conservatism is extreme even by the modern Tory party’s standards. But her latest contribution to the public debate has gone even further than her usual inflammatory rhetoric.

Last night (July 8), she spoke at the National Conservatism Conference in Washington DC – an event for hard right political figures from across the world.

In her speech, Braverman gave her verdict on the Tories’ time in office. It was quite extraordinary.

Braverman blasted her former colleagues in government, branding them ‘liberal Conservatives who trashed the Tory party’. She said: “Our problem is us. Our problem is that the liberal Conservatives who trashed the Tory party think it was everyone’s fault but their own. My party governed as liberals and we were defeated as liberals. But seemingly, as ever, it is Conservatives who are to blame.”

Elsewhere, she criticised initiatives to support LGBT+ rights, suggesting that government buildings were ‘occupied territory’ because they flew LGBT+ flags.

“We Tory ministers, nominally in charge of the system, completely failed,” she said, before going on to criticise government qualities initiatives: “The progress flag flew over our buildings as if they were occupied territory. I actually asked, as a minister: ‘Why is this happening? Who says it has to?’ And could get no answer – none that would be committed to paper anyway.

“I wanted to scrap the unconscious bias training which basically taught people how bad and racist Britain was. I was told that I was on the wrong side of history by my senior civil servant.

“I don’t say this to boast or curry favour with you as an audience, but to starkly confess my failure. I couldn’t even get the flag of a horrible political campaign I disagreed with taken down from the roof of the government department I was supposed to be in charge of.”

Later, she added: “What the Progress flag says to me is one monstrous thing: that I was a member of a government that presided over the mutilation of children in our hospitals”.

She then went on to suggest that the Conservative Party should have been even more hostile to LGBT+ people, specifically trans people, than they were when in office, and implied that those not opposed to improvements in the lives of trans people were ‘monsters seeking to mutilate children’.

She said: “We Tories, right through our smoking ruin of a general election campaign, claimed that we were doing something about trans fanatics, when in fact what we did was let it happen”, later adding: “And this is our best defence: that we let it happen – that the fanatics who had worked their way through the institutions were negligently let get away with it, perhaps by innocent ministers who couldn’t comprehend their sick ambitions. But again, I have to tell you, this is simply not true.

“I, in the last parliament, had colleague after colleague who didn’t turn a blind eye to this, who weren’t simply somehow tricked by monsters seeking to mutilate children. I had colleagues who supported it, who were fully signed up to the project and who saw people like me, who opposed it, as being not just the real villains, but somehow the people losing the party votes too with our ‘hateful’ words.”

With Braverman widely touted as a potential candidate to replace Rishi Sunak as leader of the Conservative Party, we may be getting a glimpse of just how unhinged the Tories are about to become.

Chris Jarvis is head of strategy and development at Left Foot Forward

The post Suella Braverman’s latest speech shows she really has lost the plot appeared first on Left Foot Forward: Leading the UK’s progressive debate.


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