Voters yet to make up their minds on the European Union (EU) referendum question are twice as likely to cite immigration as their main concern than the economy, a poll has found. The results could explain why the Leave campaign has been gaining momentum in recent days.
According to a Sky News poll, of the 29 percent of Brits who are still undecided on the issue, 28 percent are most concerned about the impact the EU has on immigration levels, whereas just 15 percent cite the economy as their biggest concern.
The results are good news for Leave campaigners who have been focussing on making the public aware of the leading role the European Union has played in driving immigration to Britain into the hundreds of thousands a year, while hampering the British government’s ability to reverse that trend.
The Remain campaign, meanwhile, has been relying on establishment figures in the banking industry to warn of economic doom should the British people dare to opt to leave the Union at the referendum on 23 June.
An intervention by Bank of England Governor Mark Carney, in which he warned of recession, inflation, a “sharp” crash in the value of Stirling, lower wages and rising house prices in the event of Brexit led one independent analyst to comment “It was as if George Osborne had written the script.”
The Leave campaign has been gaining momentum steadily over the last four weeks, rising from being eight points behind in mid-late April to a dead heat on 50 percent apiece in the current poll of polls.
Based on Sky’s results, the events of this week could see Leave pull ahead for the first time thanks to the Office of National Statistics’ admission that it has underestimated European migration by 1.5 million people.
Responding to that figure, Conservative Employment Minister Priti Patel said: “These figures – which had to be dragged out of the government – show the scale and impact of immigration from the EU is even higher than previously admitted.
“It is out of control – and cannot be controlled as long as we stay in the EU.
“The only way we can take back control, and deliver on our manifesto commitment to reduce migration is to Vote Leave on 23 June.”
Even more damningly, the former Tory leader Iain Duncan-Smith has revealed that Germany, not the Prime Minister David Cameron, led the way during Mr Cameron’s renegotiation talks, designed to secure a better deal on EU membership for the UK. They even went so far as to block migration control proposals.
“The Germans said from the outset, you are not getting border control. Full stop,” he said. “They have had a de facto veto over everything.”