`Slashing foreign entrants to tens of thousands a year was not government policy’ 18th April 2011: Distancing himself David Cameron’s tougher stance on immigration, Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg cutting down the numbers of foreigner entrants to tens of thousands a year was not government policy.
Claiming was ‘not a numbers game’, the Deputy Prime Minister said cutting levels was only an ‘aspiration’.
Clegg told BBC 1’s The Politics Show: `It’s not in the coalition agreement and I don’t think anyone suggests that what we should be doing is pursuing fixed numerical targets in immigration policy.
‘Lots of people come in and out of this country, not least through the European Union, who you can’t just numerically control, so I don’t think it’s a numbers game.’
Responding to the assertion, Labour claimed it provided evidence that the coalition Government’s immigration policy was in a state of confusion.
Shadow Home Secretary Yvette Cooper claimed the Tory-led Government’s immigration policy was now in utter chaos.
Ministers need to explain urgently what on earth their immigration policy now was and whether cabinet ministers were actually prepared to deliver it or not.
Copper asserted they still did not know whether David Cameron’s promise to cut net immigration to the tens of thousands was Government policy or not, as the Prime Minister was claiming it was, while the Deputy Prime Minister was claiming it was not.
Immigration policy is too important to be left in such chaos. They need an honest debate about immigration, with strong, workable controls for the sake of local communities and the economy.
Instead, they have incompetence and disarray while the Prime Minister was not being straight with people about what his Government is doing, Copper said.