Cabinet Office minister Michael Gove’s history of vile homophobic, racist and sexist remarks has been unearthed in a series of recordings.
The recordings, revealed by The Independent, expose comments made by Gove, the Duchy of Lancaster, during speeches at the Cambridge Union when he was a student in the late 1980s, and after he had graduated in the early 1990s.
In one debate on the British Empire when he was a student, Gove said: “It may be moral to keep an empire because the fuzzy-wuzzies can’t look after themselves.” The term fuzzy-wuzzy is a derogatory slur for a Black person.
During the same debate, Gove argued that the British turned “fettered foreigners” into “gentlemen” by colonising them.
He later described influential gay economist John Maynard Keynes as a “homosexualist”, and added: “Many of us are familiar with the fact that homosexuals thrive primarily on short-term relations.”
Bizarrely, he went on: “Those of us who’ve spent hours in New York bathhouses will realise that in one night you can pack in 15 loving relationships and 300 one-night stands, and still be none the worse for wear.”
Gove even managed to squeeze into the same speech derogatory comments about northerners.
Discussing Margaret Thatcher, he said: “We are at last experiencing a new empire, an empire where the happy south stamps over the cruel, dirty, toothless face of the northerner.”
Michael Gove was working for the BBC when he described politician as a paedophile
Later, in 1993, when he had graduated and was working for the BBC, Michael Gove returned to the Cambridge Union for another debate.
Gove claimed that then-European Commissioner Leon Brittan, who was falsely accused of historic child sex abuse, was a paedophile.
He told an extended joke about paedophilia, one part of which was redacted by The Independent as it included a reference to a sex act with a child.
During the same year, Gove made another speech in which he made horrifically sexist comments about now-Conservative MP and minister of state for prisons Lucy Frazer.
Gove said Frazer, who was Cambridge Union president at the time, had done “remarkably well”, coming from “the back streets of the slums of Leeds”, made jokes about the length of her skirt, and suggested she had slept with the entire rugby team of a Cambridge college.
He also said Frazer was “actually capable of tempting me into bed”, although according to The Independent, the two never had a relationship.
Liberal Democrat chief whip Wendy Chamberlain said: “Michael Gove should be ashamed that he ever thought these things, let alone said them. These inappropriate and racist remarks are not befitting of a government minister, not befitting a journalist, in fact not befitting anyone.
“The prime minister should consider whether this is the type of person that deserves to be sat around the cabinet table. However, given Boris Johnson’s own history of disgraceful remarks, I expect this will be another shameful issue he lets go unchallenged.”