Immigration is the foremost issue pushing the British public into voting for Brexit, new analysis from David Cameron’s election guru Lynton Crosby has claimed.
Following a week of immigration-based campaigning by Leave activists, a new poll has reportedly seen a 13-point lead for the ‘Remain’ campaign slashed to just a 5-point lead.
While there are concerns with the methodology of ORB polling as revealed by Breitbart London last year, the Tory election chief claims the movement is a direct result of the campaign pivoting to immigration as an issue.
The news will call into question the judgement of the ‘Vote Leave’ establishment campaign, which has intentionally avoided the issue of immigration due to their neo-liberal, free movement beliefs.
But it will embolden campaigners like Nigel Farage and Arron Banks (Leave.eu) who warned from the outset – alongside Breitbart London – that immigration would be the primary issue that would swing voters over.
Mr Crosby writes in today’s Telegraph: “increasing focus on lack of control over immigration and associated message discipline” is helping the Leave campaign.
This flies in the face of the claims made by UKIP MP Douglas Carswell and his best friend Tory MEP Daniel Hannan, who said at the start of this campaign that they wanted to focus on other issues like the NHS.
Now however, having seen the polling, Messrs Carswell and Hannan have performed a volte face.
This weekend Mr. Carswell – who last year gave a speech entitled “Enoch [Powell] was wrong” for a pro-EU, EU-funded think tanks – wrote a blog post on his website entitled: “Immigration is a symbol of lost control”.
In February he told Andrew Marr: “I think there is a difference of strategy between the two campaigns [Vote Leave and Leave.EU/UKIP]. On the one hand I think that Leave.EU wants to put more of a focus on identity and questions of immigration. I happen to believe, and I think Vote Leave happens to believe that we want an optimistic, upbeat, internationalist message.”
Mr. Crosby’s analysis of what has swayed the latest poll in favour of Leave however, is quite simple:
“While this ORB poll shows the Leave campaign is being more effective, they will need continue to campaign with the same effort over the coming weeks if they are to bridge the vote gap.
“The ORB research demonstrates where Leave have made progress. Their net lead over Remain on immigration has increased by eight points (to +29) with a majority (52%) of voters believing Leave has the right position on the issue. The Leave campaign have also neutralised terrorism as an issue – with 35% of voters saying Remain exposes the UK to a greater risk of terrorism 35% of voters saying the same of the Leave campaign – a net nine point change since the previous wave of research. And the Leave campaign have also reduced their deficit on the economy and jobs – from 21 and 15 points behind to nine and seven behind respectively.”