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Home / World / Ali Milani: Meet the young comic fan hoping to get Boris Johnson off the pitch

Ali Milani: Meet the young comic fan hoping to get Boris Johnson off the pitch



The 25-year-old walks down the driveway of a red brick house on the very edge of West London and knocks on the door. And wait. And rearranges his collar.

No answer. "The problem with a sunny day like this," he says with a tight smile, "is that everyone is out there."

If Milani succeeds, it would be one of the biggest earthquakes in British political history.

] Never before has a seated prime minister lost his seat in a parliamentary election. And while Johnson has not yet scheduled elections – although speculation is widespread, there will be one before the end of the year – Milani wastes no time in overthrowing the prime minister.

"Can you imagine," he said wistfully, "the moment we stand on stage and the returning officer reads out the result … a 25-year-old resident has the Prime Minister for the first time in the history of the Place. "

It's not as far-fetched as it sounds. What has traditionally been a conservative conservative seat has shifted marginally in recent years. In the last elections in 201

7, the majority of Johnson has more than halved to just over 5,000 votes.

The constituency was founded in 2010 due to border changes and has been conservative ever since.

According to the conservative think tank Onward, which took into account the growing number of younger voters in the region, it is now considered "vulnerable".

Among them is the young Labor candidate and comic fan whose favorite character is Superman.

  Shoppers bustle in the city center of Uxbridge.

The Anti-Boris

What appeals to Milani most in his popular comic book collection is "the classic story of good versus evil". "It's a tale he often comes back to.

Milani throws Boris in the same basket as US President Donald Trump and Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, who in his opinion represents a" bold, right-wing, evil style of politics. "

In the meantime, he sees himself as part of a "wave of young progressive thinkers around the world."

He compared Johnson's privileged education and Eton School to his own childhood, which grew up in a social housing estate, and one single mother "I had trouble paying the utility bill."

"I was not considered an MP or PM from birth," said the political newcomer who was born into a Muslim family in Iran and at the age of five moved to the UK.

Until he was elected a Labor candidate in July, Milani served as vice president of the National Union of Students A student at Brunel University, he met Johnson in 2015 for the first time at a local Husting – a lively "back and forth" on the merit of ballot boxes on campus.

He said that if he met Johnson again, he would "like to take him to Uxbridge."

Towards the end of Johnson's tenure as mayor of London, the prominent politician, as Milani describes it, was brought to the secure conservative seat and elected deputy in 2015.

The seat had a secure conservative majority was such a good place for Johnson to return to parliament.

But "he never lived here," Milani said, pointing to the manicured suburban streets. "If you dropped him at the bottom of the road, he would not be able to find his way home."

"I grew up here – I use the same hospitals as the people here, I studied in the same schools as the people here," Milani said. "And I think people deserve leaders who understand what it's like living like we do."

He points to local plans for a third runway at Heathrow Airport, just a stone's throw from this part of London.

"We have some of the worst air (quality) in London," says Milani. "So if I say that Boris is not from here, he literally does not breathe the same air we breathe."

CNN turned to Johnson's office, but received no answer at the time of publication.

Bold offensive comments

In the city center of Uxbridge, Milani welcomed the owner of a bustling Greek café with the intimacy of an old friend.

He sat down among other customers and condemned what he called Johnson's "outrageous offensive comments" – like comparing Muslim women wearing veils to mailboxes – and said they were a "disgrace" in this " multicultural "community.

However, Milan's track record of offensive comments is not exactly clean.

  A row of broken telephone booths in the main shopping street of Uxbrdge.
In 2012, he wrote several anti-Semitic tweets, including one in response to a thread that said, "No, you will not mate, it will cost you a pound of #jew." In another tweet it said, "Israel has no right to exist" and "oppression is something that your people should know about."

Milani has publicly apologized for these comments he made as a teenager. He quickly added that "they do not do it right".

He said he has since "taken serious steps to gain people's trust," such as visiting Auschwitz, reaching out to the Jewish community, and "anti-Semitism training."

The comments come as a Labor Party. and its leader Jeremy Corbyn – was prosecuted by allegations of anti-Semitism, which is officially denied.

shift to the left?

For the locals staying in the main shopping center of Uxbridge, the biggest question mark hanging over Milani is, well, who is that? Johnson lose weight. But there was a mixed bag of conservative and worker support.

One of them, 71-year-old Peter Hatcher, said he would continue to vote for Johnson because he wants him to "do what he promises" – Brexit.

Hatcher, as The majority of the members of this constituency voted in favor of leaving the EU in the 2016 referendum. Johnson has been a key figure in the holiday campaign and experts say his chances of winning the next elections will largely depend on his ability to deliver by 31 October.

  Boris Johnson reacts after winning the seat in Uxbridge and South Ruislip in 2015

Like many London boroughs, Uxbridge and South Ruislip have "gradually shifted to the left" over the last 20 years – albeit "slower" than others – said Professor Tony Travers , Director of the Institute of Public Affairs at the London School of Economics Elections will be convened before or after Brexit, Travers added.

He said Johnson's "best setting" at the next election – and also the worst for Milani – would be if "Brexit has taken place and has not proven to be a total disaster."

It would be Joh He has not delivered on its promise, Travers said.

Come on, Brexit or bright sunshine, Milani gives it all.


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