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Tue, 31 March 2020

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Downing Street adviser quits amid row over past comments on eugenics, race and welfare claimants

Downing Street adviser quits amid row over past comments on eugenics, race and welfare claimants
3 min read

A controversial Downing Street adviser has quit after a row over his past comments on eugenics, race and welfare claimants.


Andrew Sabisky claimed he was “in the middle of a giant character assassination” and didn’t want to be a distraction to the Government.

His resignation came hours after Boris Johnson was criticised for failing to condemn the writings of the 27-year-old “super forecaster”, which included the claim black people were intellectually inferior to white people.

An official spokesperson refused 32 times to outright disavow the comments at a briefing, simply saying the Prime Minister’s views are “well-publicised and well-documented”.

PoliticsHome earlier revealed Mr Sabisky suggested long-term welfare claimants are “less conscientious and agreeable than the average person”.

He was reportedly hired following a call by the PM’s chief aide Dominic Cummings’ for “misfits and weirdos” to come and work in Number 10.

But a row over his appointment began when it was revealed he once called for contraception programmes to be expanded to stop the creation of a "permanent underclass”.

On Monday night Mr Sabisky revealed he was stepping down from the role in a series of posts on Twitter, writing: “Hey all. The media hysteria about my old stuff online is mad but I wanted to help HMG [the Government] not be a distraction.

"Accordingly I've decided to resign as a contractor. I hope Number 10 hires more people with good geopolitical forecasting track records and that media learn to stop selective quoting.

“I know this will disappoint a lot of people but I signed up to do real work, not be in the middle of a giant character assassination.

"If I can't do the work properly there's no point, and I have a lot of other things to do with my life.”

He added: “Last of all I am beyond grateful to everyone who supported me publicly and privately, all kinds of great friends, left and right-wing alike - you're the best people and eventually I will get around to thanking you all one by one.”

PM HAS 'SERIOUS QUESTIONS TO ANSWER'

In response to the news Ian Lavery, Labour Party chairman, said: “It’s right that Andrew Sabisky is no longer working in government.

"He should never have been appointed in the first place.

“After Number 10 publicly stood by him today, Boris Johnson has serious questions to answer about how this appointment was made and whether he agrees with his vile views.”

Earlier the Tory MP William Wragg had tweeted: “Andrew Sabisky’s presence in Number 10 is a poor reflection on the Government and there is no way to defend it.

“He needs to go. ‘Weirdos’ and ‘misfits’ are all very well, but please can they not gratuitously cause offence.

“I cannot be the only one uncomfortable with recent Number 10 trends.”

And former minister Caroline Nokes said:  “Cannot believe Number 10 has refused to comment on Andrew Sabisky.

“I don’t know him from a bar of soap, but don’t think we’d get on, must be no place in Government for the views he’s expressed.”

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