Trevor Phillips exposes key flaw in immigration policy since Brexit
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The majority of the British public believe that the number of migrants living in the UK is too high, according to a new poll by BMG research. It may be a sign that voters don’t believe that Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has a firm grip in the issue despite attempts to work with French President Emmanuel Macron to deter small boat crossings across the English Channel.
Exclusive polling for i discovered that 63 percent of respondents believed that the number of migrants was “too high”.
This view was reflected across the political spectrum with 84 percent of 2019 Conservative voters agreeing with the statement along with 52 of those who voted Labour and 50 percent of Liberal Democrat voters.
Voters in Wales and the East of England tended to believe that immigration was too high compared to lower figures in London and Scotland.
Older voters over 65 were also much more likely to believe that the number of migrants was too high compared to voters aged 18-24.
Those who wanted to stay out of the EU rather than rejoin were also much more likely to believe that migration was too high.
2019 Brexit Party voters also overwhelmingly backed the state, although SNP and Green Party voters were more pro-migration with 50 percent and 43 percent believing that the current level of migration was “about right”.
Although the figures come less than two weeks after record numbers of migrants had entered the UK, the majority of the 1,571 believed that the level was too high regardless of whether they were told about this increase.
BMG pollster Yiota Papouridou said the poll showed that the public had a “fairly entrenched view, with a large majority believing numbers to be too high.”
She also added that many respondents didn’t feel that Brexit had helped reduce numbers of migrants.
She said: “Despite one of the key planks of Brexit being to take back control of immigration, almost half of the public believe leaving the EU has actually had a negative impact on migration levels.
“Strikingly, a majority also believe Labour is best suited to tackle immigration over the Conservatives.”
It comes as Mr Sunak is set to unveil a raft of measures in an attempt to bring migration numbers down.
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Over the weekend, Immigration Minister Robert Jenrick said that migration would be an issue for “many years to come”, warning that the number of people coming was “unsustainable.”
Mr Jenrick argued that those arriving in the UK from Albania should be banned from claiming asylum as they were coming from a “demonstrably safe” country.
He also pinpointed student visas as an area “ripe for reform” as figures from the Office of National Statistics showed that the rise in migration was fuelled by from international students and their dependents.
“We’ve got very liberal rules on students bringing their family members with them and that is something that we are interested in reviewing,” Mr Jenrick told GB News.
He added that student visas were being used by some as a “backdoor” to bring families into the country.
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