Socialist Worker

Don't blame migrants

Issue No. 2341

The mainstream parties in the Eastleigh by-election are focusing on immigration. It is a sign of how much they want to avoid the real issues.

Immigrants are in no way responsible for the continuing recession, but the right are determined to pretend they are.

Tory candidate Maria Hutchings attacked the previous Labour government for its “beneficial” treatment of migrants.

They find it easier to get away with lies about immigration in areas where people have little to test them against.

In Eastleigh some 95 percent of population are white and 98 percent of those are British born. But politicians are practising their rhetoric for the future general election.

The Tories have floated plans to stop European Union citizens claiming benefits for a year after they arrive in Britain.

The implication is that people come here in order to claim benefits.

Home secretary Theresa May is threatening draconian new laws to deport “foreign criminals” even if they have served their sentence and have families in Britain.

Labour leader Ed Miliband’ didn’t criticise these schemes for being racist. He just said they would be unworkable.

Miliband might instead point out that just 0.16 percent of Poles living in Britain are in prison and only 2.8 percent are claiming unemployment benefit.

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What We Think
Tue 19 Feb 2013, 16:26 GMT
Issue No. 2341
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