Thursday 28 November 2019 / 12:01 AM Shami Chakrabarti / Women and Equalities

Newly-unearthed comments further expose Boris Johnson’s contempt for women

Newly unearthed sexist and misogynistic comments by Boris Johnson have further exposed the Prime Minister’s contempt for women.

In articles written for The Spectator, Boris Johnson attacked single mothers and unmarried women:

• Johnson described children of ‘single mothers’ as “ill-raised, ignorant, aggressive and illegitimate … who in theory will be paying for our pensions.” He goes on to say that it is “outrageous that married couples should pay for ‘the single mothers’ desire to procreate independently of men.”

• Johnson said the ‘blame’ was not on “uppity and irresponsible women” for getting pregnant because it was their “natural desire” and there was only a limited ‘pool’ of men.

• Johnson criticised “the modern Briton [for] his reluctance or inability to take control of his woman.”

• Johnson suggested that there needed to be a way found “to restore women’s desire to be married”

• Johnson also suggested that the prospect of social housing is an ‘enticement’ for young women to have children, and goes on to argue that “cuts in the safety net” to leave women in “destitution on a Victorian scale” would act as a deterrent to unmarried women having children.

These comments join a long line of sexist and misogynistic comments made by Boris Johnson during his journalistic and political career. He once wrote that the way to deal with advice from a female colleague was to “just pat her on the bottom and send her on her way”, suggested that the increase in the number of Malaysian women going to university was to “find men to marry” and branded David Cameron a ‘girly swot’.

Shami Chakrabarti, Labour’s Shadow Attorney General, responding to Boris Johnson’s statement ahead of the unveiling of the statue of Nancy Astor, said:

“These unearthed comments further reveal Boris Johnson’s contempt for women and families, as he hypocritically attacks what he appallingly describes as ‘illegitimate’ children.

“From attacking single mothers working hard to raise their kids, to advocating sexual harassment in the workplace, his sexist comments are an affront to women everywhere. He has no right to attend or have any involvement in this event.

“Someone whose attitudes towards women are straight out of the dark ages is not fit to be Prime Minister of our country.”

Ends