Brexit Party MEP and MP candidate Ann Widdecombe has said that she does not care how many “ethnics” are elected to Parliament.
Speaking during a debate about women in Parliament on Good Morning Britain, she claimed that the UK should have a “meritocratic” system and that she would rather have a non-diverse Parliament if the MPs were of a high quality.
She did not take into account that many MPs represent diverse constituencies, and therefore diversity can be a key factor in the quality of an MP, and their ability to reflect the experiences of those constituents.
“Women get there on their own merits. That is the only basis on which they should get there and I do not care how many women, ethnics, gays, old folks, young folks, ginger headed folks or anybody else are there.”
Widdecombe’s use of the antiquated term “ethnics” has also generated a backlash on social media, while she seemingly conflated the experiences of people of colour with “ginger headed folks”.
Yet, as we all know, Widdecombe has a history of making crass comments in front of a camera. Earlier this year she likened Britain’s relationship to the EU as one of a slave and slave owner, in comments that were widely criticised. Despite the backlash, she defended her comments.
She has also said that science may “produce an answer” to being gay and has backed shackling female prisoners.
Baroness Warsi, who also participated in the debate, tried to explain to Widdecombe that minority groups face disadvantages, and not getting to Parliament is not a reflection of their mediocrity. But Widdecombe stood by her comments.
Another example of the Brexit Party being stuck in the 1950s.