A column by Boris Johnson in which he raged against working-class communities has come back to haunt him.
The Prime Minister blasted “blue collar” men and claimed many were criminals – without offering any evidence.
He said the “modern British male is useless”, adding: “If he is blue collar, he is likely to be drunk, criminal, aimless, feckless and hopeless, and perhaps claiming to suffer from low self-esteem brought on by unemployment.”
The comments were made in a rant in The Spectator magazine in 1995 about the number of single mums in Britain.
He complained the “proliferation of single mothers” was costing taxpayers £9.1billion a year and producing a generation of “ill-raised, ignorant, aggressive and illegitimate children”.
After the remarks about “blue collar” men, the snobbish article continued: “If he (the father) is white collar, he is likely to be little better.
“It is no use blaming uppity and irresponsible women for becoming pregnant in the absence of a husband.
“Given their natural desire to have babies, and the tininess of what the sociologist William Julius Wilson has called the ‘marriageable pool’, it is the only answer.”
Writing about the state of society, Mr Johnson raged: “To a large extent, like many others, I blame successive Labour and Tory governments and social security secretaries, including Peter Lilley, for failing to restrict the public emoluments available to this group.
“It is a bit late to start wondering now about how one might adjust the priority accorded to single mothers in the queue for housing; or whether to cut the single parent premium on child benefit; or whether to build in a job search requirement for single mothers with children of school age.
“That should have been done before half a million single mothers found themselves on benefit.
“No one believes that these girls make a cold and detailed calculation of the benefits that might be avail- able to them if they failed to take their pill.
“But there is some evidence that the prospect of more readily available housing is an enticement; and it must be generally plausible that if having a baby out of wed- lock meant sure-fire destitution on a Victorian scale, young girls might indeed think twice about having a baby.”
The article, written while Mr Johnson was assistant editor of the Daily Telegraph, has resurfaced as the PM campaigns for votes in working-class areas.
Polling guru Sir John Curtice said Mr Johnson will rely on the working-class vote as much as middle-class support to win the upcoming election.
Sir John wrote for the BBC : “At each of the last three elections, the Conservatives have advanced more strongly than Labour among working-class voters. In the last election, the difference between the two groups had become quite small. This election looks set to repeat that pattern.
“Support for the Conservatives is higher among those without a degree than among graduates – as might be expected, given that most of the party’s support comes from those who voted Leave. This, in turn, helps explain why the party is no longer more popular among middle-class voters than those in working-class occupations.”
An average of polls published before November 23 found the Tories had 42% support among both middle class (ABC1) and working class (C2DE) voters – suggesting the party may not be able to rely on one social class to seize victory.