It was with a splash that the classic Tory power pose made a return to newspaper front pages this morning.
Standing outside the Home Office Sajid Javid followed George Osborne, David Cameron and Theresa May in striking the awkward stance that is supposed to strike notes of confidence, determination and strength.
The underlying message was also made clear. Javid is here to end the hostile era for illegal immigrants, with promises of a policy overhaul on the back of the Windrush saga which he feels personally affected by.
The Daily Mail heralded it a victory for diversity in the country, asking of the appointment: “Could there be a more eloquent tribute to how far Britain has evolved into a diverse, meritocratic, multi-racial society?”
But a glance back over Javid’s voting record paints a much removed picture from the one the mainstream media would have you believe.
During his eight year stint as an MP, he has backed measures supporting Theresa May’s “hostile environment” for illegal immigrants with some gusto, voting for the government’s controversial Immigration Act in 2014 and consistently voting against a right to remain for EU nationals already in living in the UK.
Indeed, over the past few years alone he has:
- Voted to restrict the support available to failed asylum seekers and illegal migrants.
- Voted in favour of the state being allowed to intercept people’s communications and obtain personal data.
- Voted in favour of arrangements for immigration checks for those opening banks and building society accounts.
- Voted against banning the immigration detention of those who are pregnant and against guidance to be taken into account on the immigration detention of vulnerable people.
- Voted to create criminal offences of renting a home, driving, and working, while disqualified from doing so due to immigration status; and for other measures in the Immigration Bill.
- Voted in favour of making it a criminal offence for someone to work if their immigration status prohibits it.
Given his past record it’s hard to hold out any hope for the victims of the Windrush crisis or for the treatment of EU nationals after Britain’s split from the continent has been completed.
On Monday, @sajidjavid vowed to leave “no stone unturned” in pursuit of the truth about Windrush.
On Wednesday, he voted to keep all details of how it happened secret.
Dizzying hypocrisy has become a prerequisite for membership of Theresa May’s Government.
— James O’Brien (@mrjamesob) May 3, 2018
He is the son of an immigrant who turned his back on immigrants, and as May’s whipping boy it stands to reason that we will see more of the same from the Home Office over the coming years.
Same shit different minister, I suppose you could say.