LONDON — Sadiq Khan was elected Mayor of London on Friday, making him the most powerful Muslim politician in the Western world.He won a resounding victory in the capital despite a hostile campaign by Prime Minister David Cameron’s Conservative Party, which attempted to link the South Londoner to terrorism and extremists.
that Khan could not be trusted to protect London’s 8.5 million
inhabitants backfired spectacularly, with senior Conservatives admitting
that the divisive campaign drove voters away from the party.
Conservative chairwoman Sayeeda Warsi said her party’s strategy would
cause lasting damage. “Our appalling dog whistle campaign for
#LondonMayor2016 lost us the election, our reputation & credibility
on issues of race and religion,” she wrote on Twitter as the results
With most of the first-round votes counted, the Labour candidate had a lead of around 9 percent. Khan,
whose father became a bus driver when he moved to Britain from
Pakistan, will command a $23 billion annual budget and oversee London’s
policing, housing, and transport infrastructure.
45-year-old former human-rights lawyer was elected as a Member of
Parliament for Tooting in South London just 11 years ago but he rose
quickly through the Labour ranks.In 2009, he became the first Muslim member of the British Cabinet, which required him to be sworn in by the Queen. He told the New Statesman:
“The palace called me and said, ‘What type of Bible do you want to
swear on?’ When I said the Quran, they said, ‘We haven’t got one.’ So I
took one with me.”
is a devout Muslim, who refrains from drinking alcohol, but he has
often explained that his faith is just one facet of his character. “We
all have multiple identities: I’m a Londoner, I’m British, I’m English,
I’m of Asian origin, of Pakistani heritage, I’m a dad, I’m a husband,
I’m a long-suffering Liverpool fan,” he said.Zac Goldsmith, Khan’s Conservative opponent, started the race to replace Boris Johnson as a popular figure with a reputation for political independence who was best known for his advocacy of ecological issues.
His image has since been tarnished in the eyes of many Londoners who were disappointed by the tone of his campaign.
Shazia Awan, a former Conservative Party candidate, broke ranks ahead of Thursday’s vote to accuse her party of running a “racist” election campaign.
She told The Daily Beast she was relieved by the result....continue reading: http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2016/05/06/huge-win-for-sadiq-khan-london-s-first-muslim-mayor...