Increasingly promoted by the liberal media as a future prime minister, Ruth Davidson has demanded Britain’s Conservative government drop migration control targets.
Claiming to set out what she called a “centre-ground conservative vision” at Glasgow University, the leader of the Scottish Conservatives delivered an unashamedly pro-globalisation speech, declaring: “We need to rebuild consent in our capitalist systems, in our institutions, and a liberal way of life.”
“In or out of the EU, our task remains the same: to be open, not closed, to the world around us,” she said, going on to suggest that the government should dismiss public concerns over immigration and remaining in the Single Market.
Westminster must be “brave enough to remember that the free flow of ideas, goods, services, people, and capital is always the right way to go”, the Europhile figure said of Brexit negotiations, before criticising politicians’ reluctance to open Britain’s borders.
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Warning against attempts to “wind the clock back to some misremembered golden past”, Davidson said: “We have, in this country, allowed immigration to be a concept that worries us. Some sort of problem to be fixed. A wrong to be corrected. It is a view I believe we need to challenge.”
Making reference to the controversy over so-called Windrush migrants, she said the Home Office should create a “mature [immigration] system, which leads to a more settled country… one that respects people and families whose right to live and work here should be unquestioned”.
Davidson then demanded the government scrap its pledge to reduce immigration to the tens of thousands, claiming Britain needs to “recognise that people from other nations wanting to come to our country is a sign of our success as a vibrant, prosperous culture”.
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“Even if that target were to stay, I see no reason why overseas students should be included within the numbers counted,” she added, repeating the call she made alongside other globalist Conservative Party MPs earlier this year to see 75,000 people artificially removed from immigration figures.
Prime Minister Theresa May explained why students appear in the data last November, when she noted that their inclusion “is in the international definition of net migration and we abide by the same definition that is used by other countries around the world”.
Described in The Guardian as an “open, pluralist [and] socially liberal” political figure, and recently named amongst Vogue magazine’s list of 25 ‘most influential’ women alongside a plethora of other leftists, the prospect of Davidson leading the Tories nationally was talked up by a gushing British press with her “Building a Stronger Britain” speech making the front page of several newspapers on Wednesday.