08 October 2012

Playing to the gallery

It must be a sign of desperation: to advocate a policy which has absolutely no hope of being implemented.

THE GOVERNMENT yesterday indicated that it could introduce visa restrictions for some EU citizens in an attempt to net reduce immigration into the UK.
Both David Cameron and home secretary Theresa May indicated their support for the plan, which has been added to a wide-ranging Whitehall review of Britain’s relationship with Europe.
“I believe in free movement, but two weeks ago, I visited two factories in a week, and I asked the question: how many people do you employ from other EU countries? In one it was 60 per cent, in the other it was 50 per cent,” Cameron told the BBC. “Heavens above, we have got so many unemployed people in our country that we want to train and educate and give apprenticeships to and get back into work...we’ve already capped immigration from outside the EU on economic grounds.”

Both Cameron and May must be well aware that there is no possibility of securing any further limitation on the right of EU citizens to move to the UK.  They may not like it but free movement of labour is a cardinal principle of the EU Treaties and could not be moderated unless the UK were to leave the EU altogether.  So why raise the issue?


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