Nigel Farage’s Reform is Now More Trusted Than Tories on Immigration

The British people are dissatisfied with how the government is handling immigration, with a majority saying the number of arrivals both legal and illegal should fall.

Reform UK notes its opposition to “rampant immigration” is seeing it pick up support as UK politics realigns itself, the party deputy chair has told Breitbart London in response to new figures.

Research by Ipsos Mori with the pro-immigration and pro-integration think tank British Future into public attitudes on new arrivals reported this week dissatisfaction in how the government is handling the border, with voters from different political camps bringing their own concerns. While Labour’s present commanding poll lead shows through in the data, remarkably Nigel Farage personally, and his Reform UK party polls ahead of the Conservatives on trust and policies, a finding which should be an alarming wake-up call for Tory politicians whose party has dominated Britain politically for 200 years.

Responding to the figures, Reform UK Deputy Leader Ben Habib told Breitbart London that the Conservative Party is suffering from having turned its back on its own voters. He said: “We are witnessing a historic realignment in politics. Not for a hundred years have we seen such a change.

“It all started in 2016 when our governing class turned its back on the will of the British people to ditch the politics of globalism and to put first the country. They are still ignoring the country and the people. They have instead delivered us an existential threat, economically, socially, culturally and constitutionally.”

Per Ipsos, almost everyone in Britain is unhappy about the border one way or another, but the reasons for being unhappy varies by political affiliation, and some camps feel it is a much more pressing issue than others. 69 per cent of the public “say they are dissatisfied” with immigration and just 9 per cent are happy, the paper states. Inside those headline figures are 52 per cent of the public who are unhappy because they think migration should fall, and 17 per cent who are dissatisfied because they think it ought to rise.

Asked specifically what they felt dissatisfied about, 54 per cent of respondents named “not doing enough to stop channel crossings” and 51 per cent said “immigration numbers are too high”. Meanwhile, just 28 per cent said the government is “creating a negative or fearful environment for migrants who live in Britain” and a quarter replied it isn’t “treating asylum seekers well”.

Breaking these sentiments down by party, right-wing voters are much more dissatisfied with British border control than left, with 72 per cent of past Conservative voters saying they feel that way, compared to 40 per cent for Labour. But crucially, right-wing voters say immigration is a very important matter to them, while the same is not true for the left. These findings suggest the next UK general election — which is predicted to be carried by the left-wing Labour Party — won’t be won on immigration, but will probably be lost on it, as voters highly dissatisfied with the Conservatives’ record in power switch allegiance to parties like Reform UK, or simply don’t vote at all.

Gideon Skinner, head of political research at Ipsos, said: “Conservative supporters are most negative towards immigration, but are also critical of the government”.

Ben Habib at a rally in opposition to the Northern Ireland Protocol at Crossgar Orange Hall. Picture date: Friday March 11, 2022. (Photo by Brian Lawless/PA Images via Getty Images)

Indeed, the Ipsos polling finds — quite incredibly, given it is a comparatively new party with just one Member of Parliament — that the public trusts Nigel Farage’s Reform (26 per cent) more than they do the Conservatives (22 per cent) on immigration. Labour beats both on the trust question, likely a reflection of its commanding position in the polls.

Speaking of this clear vote of confidence in Reform UK’s approach to migration policies in contrast to the Conservatives, party deputy leader Habib told Breitbart: “Reform UK is emerging as the party to save Britain. On a wide range of issues we offer a 180 degree change in direction; including of course our opposition to rampant immigration, which has contributed dramatically to the threats we face.

“Reform UK is on the verge of obliterating the Tory Parliamentary Party. That is a just outcome for what they have done to our wonderful country.”

Despite the way it is sometimes portrayed in the media as predominantly a threat to the Conservatives, previous polling and research has shown many Reform supporters, as well as the Brexit Party before it, are former Labour voters.

The much-discussed ‘Red Wall’ of former working-class seats across the English midlands that turned Conservative for the first time with Boris Johnson in 2019 are not tribally Tory and are up for grabs. Habib said: “We are also taking the fight to Labour, who absolutely do not represent the working class. They are more interested in the chattering self-declared intellectual liberal Islington elites. The Tories and Labour are two sides of the same coin. We will get seats – many more than anyone is predicting.”

In terms of personalities, Nigel Farage and Sir Keir Starmer both have roughly the same level of trust from the public on migration. Farage beats every leading Conservative Party figure in trust on immigration, Ipsos says.

That Reform UK’s trust rating on immigration is as high as 26 per cent suggests the party has even further to go in terms of potential overall support. Recent polling has put the party as high as 16 per cent, meaning there are voters out there who agree with the Reform message on fundamentals — border control, an important issue for instinctively conservative voters — who they have yet to persuade to support them.

Having been a key election-winner for decades, migration and border control looks set to be positively toxic to the Conservatives at this year’s expected general election as the public reflect on tough Tory promises at previous votes met with failure, if not outright contradiction once in power. The Conservatives campaigned on and won elections for many years on the promise to cut annual net migration “to the tens of thousands”, for instance.

As reported last month:

…changes by the Conservatives to the law to make arriving in Britain legally so much easier that in the year to June 2023, 1.2 million new people came to the country. Adjusting for those who left in the same period, that’s a net population increase of 672,000 in just a year… this government policy is particularly consequential because it is precisely the opposite of what the governing Conservatives promised to deliver for many years. Elections were fought and won on the promise of reducing migration “to the tens of thousands” a year — instead, it is now a million more people every 18 months.

It was impossible to keep this promise, the government said, because growing the economy is the most important thing and overrules other considerations. Fair enough, you may say: Chancellor (Finance Minister) George Osborne expressed this in his infamous words back in 2017, when in a mask-slip moment he revealed top Conservatives never planned to follow through with cutting immigration in the first place. They just kept these feelings to themselves at election time. He said:

“[N]one of [the Cabinet’s] senior members supports the pledge in private and all would be glad to see the back of something that has caused the Conservative Party such public grief… The damage to the economy from seriously reducing work visas was judged too severe by an expert migration committee; the impact on community relations of further limiting family reunion visas was seen as unpalatable; and few thought we were taking in too many refugees.”

…As recently as this month, the savants at Bloomberg predicted “soaring UK migration” would boost the British economy so much it would deliver the government a “windfall”. Seems we got a recession instead, though, and now those hoped-for floor-scrap tax cuts won’t be possible.

Source link


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *