Labour MP Pat Glass describes member of the public as 'horrible racist'

Posted On: 
19th May 2016

A Labour MP has apologised after branding a voter a “horrible racist” while campaigning for Britain to stay in the European Union.

Pat Glass introduced Jeremy Corbyn at a recent speech about the EU referendum
Credit: 
Jeff Moore/PA Images

Pat Glass, the Shadow Europe Minister, also said she was “never coming back” to Sawley in Derbyshire, after an exchange with a member of the public about immigration.

According to BBC Radio Derby, the unnamed voter had referred to a Polish family living in the town as “scroungers”.

Archbishop of Canterbury: Concern about migration is not racist

Labour 'driving voters to Ukip' with pro-EU stance

Alan Johnson: Remarkable Labour unity on EU position

Ms Glass told the station: “The very first person I come to was a horrible racist. I’m never coming back to wherever this is.”

Following criticism of her remarks, the MP said: "The comments I made were inappropriate and I regret them. Concerns about immigration are entirely valid and it’s important that politicians engage with them.

"I apologise to the people living in Sawley for any offence I have caused.”

 

The row has echoes of Gordon Brown infamously being caught during the 2010 election campaign branding Gillian Duffy a “bigoted woman” after she challenged him on immigration from Eastern Europe.

Ms Glass has been taking a prominent role in Labour’s campaign for a Remain vote in the EU referendum.

Alongside Alan Johnson, she introduced Jeremy Corbyn in his first major speech on the subject in April.

In her interview with BBC Radio Derby, she went on to argue that people should not base their decision on immigration.

She said free movement of people would continue – regardless of the outcome of the vote.

“This is the single most important decision we’re going to make in a generation. It’s going to affect their children and their grandchildren.

“They need to make that decision on something that will change; not something that won’t.

“Even if we leave the European Union – whether we stay or we leave – we have to have a deal with Europe and it will include free movement of people.”