Key politicians Amber Rudd and Boris Johnson signalled that Britain’s government is going to abandon the one thing a majority of Brexit voters wanted — a reduction in net migration.
Rudd, who is now home secretary and voted to Remain in the European Union, and Johnson, who is now foreign secretary and was one of the leaders for the Vote Leave campaign, are perhaps the most instrumental politicians in deciding how to tackle migration, bar prime minister Theresa May.
However, despite reducing and controlling immigration being the key issue for people voting for to leave the EU and subsequently Brexit winning the vote with 51.9%, those two cabinet ministers say that the target to reduce net migration to below 100,000 has been abandoned by May’s new government.
When pressed by reporters about what the government target is, Rudd said that the government’s “aim” was to reduce net migration to “sustainable levels,” as cited by the BBC, Guardian, Telegraph, and others.
Meanwhile, Johnson it was “entirely right to be careful about committing to numbers because one doesn’t want to be in a position where you are disappointing people again.”
May’s spokesperson told various media outlets that “sustainable levels does mean the tens of thousands.” Again, there is no commitment to adhere to the previous target.
Net migration is calculated on the number of people who have migrated to the UK, less the number who have left. May was only appointed as Britain’s new prime minister one week ago.
But it is not just May’s government abandoning a key pledge that won the Brexit vote, the target of reducing net migration to below 100,000 was in the Conservative manifesto and the Tories won a majority in the general election in 2015.
Prior to May being installed as the UK’s new PM, she was the home secretary and charged with the task of reducing net migration. However, she failed to reduce that number to 100,000.
Latest figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), in its “Migration Statistics Quarterly Report,” show that net migration to Britain in 2015 reached +333,000. This was a 20,000 increase on the year ending December 2014.
However, as Business Insider pointed out earlier this month, Brexit was an utterly futile attempt at curbing immigration in Britain.