New definition of extremism will exclude racists who give the Tories £10M, confirms Michael Gove

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Communities Secretary Michael Gove has confirmed that the Government’s new definition of extremism will not extend to racists who donate large chunks of cash to the Conservative Party.

Unveiling the new definition, Mr Gove told the BBC, “The definition is very clear. It includes the promotion or advancement of violence, hatred or intolerance.”

However, he went on, “But of course, extremism has more to do with extremist ideology and doesn’t extend to one-off comments by individuals. We have to look at patterns of behaviour and funding, and specifically whether there is a pattern of funding the Tory party with quite frankly obscene amounts of money.

“You might say that making blatantly racist comments and calling for an MP to be shot would be the very definition of hatred and intolerance, but before that can be established, there has to be a rigorous process and due diligence to establish whether the person making those alleged comments is A) a Tory supporter or B) has given us £10M. And I think in this case, the answer is quite clear. Case closed.”

Mr Gove was pressed on whether the £10M donated by Frank Hester would be returned.

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“Oh, I shouldn’t think so,” said Gove. 

“After all, if he’s the frightful racist people are claiming he is, then he’d probably only spend it on doing racist things and supporting racist causes.

“It’s probably much better that we keep the cash and spend on completely non-racist things like advertising our scheme to send asylum seekers to Rwanda. For £10M, we could probably put that message on a lot of buses.”