Coalition debate PM’s immigration speech

Thu, 21 Apr 2011 10:33 in News Digest
Dialogue Society News Digest

David Cameron’s speech on multiculturalism at the beginning of February created debate about integration not just within government but in British Society as a whole. Following this David Cameron has issued new remarks on immigration. These news extracts show how the Prime Minister is trying to keep the government united whilst tackling the issues of immigration and unemployment in British communities.

Press Perspectives

The Telegraph - Thursday 14th April 2011

Cameron hits back at Vince Cable’s speech over immigration by Murray Wardrop

David Cameron said that uncontrolled immigration has created many issues and problems with integration and cohesion in British communities. However Vince Cable, Liberal Democrat Business Secretary , insists that the Prime Minister’s speech may create the opposite effect and aggravate extremism as well as harm communities in Britain. The Prime Minister has also blamed the Labour party for not tackling immigration much earlier . Cameron deems that the welfare state has inflamed this problem, by making Britons welfare-dependant and opening the work for migrants. The Prime Minister said that a huge influx of migrants during the previous government has created social, health, housing and healthcare pressure and that these issues need to be addressed with immediacy.

The Guardian - Thursday 14th April 2011

Vince Cable has attacks Cameron’s “very unwise” immigration remarks by Helene Mullholland and Nicholas Watt

Vince Cable clashed with David Cameron’s speech on immigration. Cable deems that Cameron's policies will only backfire and that this may impact negatively on the election which will take place beginning of May. Nick Clegg, Deputy Prime Minister, distanced himself from the Prime Minister by saying that he “had noted rather than approved the speech”. However Cameron affirmed that the UK has benefitted from migration, with employers from all over the world especially teachers and doctors helping to inspire young people.

The Independent - Thursday 14th April 2011

Cameron denies rift on immigration

David Cameron disagreed with Vince Cable that the coalition had a widely differing idea on immigration. Cameron defended his speech and himself by saying that he was elected “to roll up his sleeves and deal with these issues.”

In response to the speech, Nick Clegg said that the Liberal Democrats had “a slightly different opinion”. "This is a Conservative Prime Minister speaking to Conservative party activists using Conservative language," he said. David Cameron believes that multiculturalism has been positive for Britain, but deems that people should learn the language, the culture and make an effort to integrate within their host country.

Key players on the field:

Ed Miliband said the Liberal Democrats minister's earlier comments indicated that "one part of the government thinks one thing and the other part thinks another." He told Sky News: "I think it's another example of where the coalition looks like a coalition of convenience rather than a coalition of principle. And actually it's hard to have a government policy that is clear and coherent if your business secretary, who's in charge of your student visa policy, is saying one thing, and actually going out of his way to attack the prime minister. The thing I'd say is, look, next time he makes a speech why don't they get a grip, have proper discussions in government, get an agreed policy."

Moving Forward:

The government will be controlling legal immigration having introduced a cap on non-EU economic migrants. They will be a clamping down on illegal immigration and getting to grips with the asylum system too. The UK Border Agency is now close to clearing the back-log of almost half a million asylum cases.