Vince Cable: Out of touch with reality

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I’ve never thought of Vince Cable as a radical. Yet the Business Secretary has proved quite unmanageable of late. He must be the only politician who thinks an influx of 212,000 mostly jobless EU immigrants is somehow a good thing for Britain.

Cable wrote a rambling article in the London Evening Standard this week which opened with the very questionable opinion that “London illustrates the broadly positive impact of immigration on Britain.”

Showing he is a man used to being ferried around in ministerial cars, he continued in a similar vein: “New arrivals from Eastern Europe are not conspicuous in the streets.” This is a very inaccurate statement. It was written only a few days after it was revealed that over a quarter (28%) of all homeless people sleeping rough on London’s streets are Eastern European migrants.

As his ministerial responsibilities include the country’s workforce, Cable was right to focus on the financial benefits of migrants and the European Union, but he is completely misguided in believing the benefits outweigh the problems. Even The Times today reported the latest regulations from Brussels will cost British businesses £1bn this year alone. How on earth can British industry be led by a Business Secretary who isn’t concerned by this?

The immigration debate did not go unchallenged by the Tories. The Home Secretary Theresa May, hit back with a well written article in the Mail saying “uncontrolled immigration – such as we saw under the last Labour Government – makes it difficult to maintain social cohesion, puts pressure on public services and can drive down wages for people on low incomes.”

May was absolutely right to highlight the impact of immigration on communities, on low-income workers and on over-stretched hospitals, schools and social services, because it is these areas which suffer the most pressure from migrant use.

Controlled migration is a good thing when it attracts skilled migrants from non-EU countries who actually benefit Britain. Rather than being forced by Brussels to take in unskilled labourers from Poland and its neighbours, Britain should be welcoming bright young professionals from Commonwealth countries like Australia and Singapore.”

It has been said today that EU migrants are more likely to start up new businesses which create jobs than UK citizens, however there seems to be no way of researching how much of this created wealth stays in Britain while relying on UK services to support these businesses.

The government has done itself no favours by deliberately withholding the publication of a sensitive report on migration. After an investigation by the BBC’s Newsnight, it is thought that Downing Street has delayed the report until after the European elections in May.  Despite being completed last year, David Cameron’s team consider the content of the report “potentially incendiary”. This shows that the British government continues to keep the Great British Public in the dark over the true extent of migration and the impact on British jobs.

The government crowed loudly over cutting immigration from non-EU countries, purely because they are utterly powerless to cut the number of EU migrants instead. Get Britain Out calls on British politicians of all parties to start putting the welfare of their constituents before the demands of Brussels. Britain must regain control of its borders and streets – otherwise the EU will continue to operate at the expense of the Great British Public.

Dominic Kirby

Researcher at Get Britain Out

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