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Oh yes you can deport half a million illegal immigrants - especially if they break the laws of this country by murdering, raping and robbing others.

You can't deport half a million workers.

How does he know they're all workers, and not dependents or criminals?

Who would clean? Who would cook? Who would pick in our fields?

Those who are currently claiming Job Seekers Allowance?

500,000 more Labour voters then.

Well, there are about 1.5 million unemployed in the UK, who could do the sorts of things Jack Dromey mentions.

But as you point out, James, it's unlikely that all of them (and perhaps not even a majority of them) are workers.

I think sometimes in politics it would be nice to have some principles. Should we really send a message saying - hey you broke the law - and we are going to reward you. I personally dont think so.

And as for the American example - having a father who lives there and who has a green card - and knowing the hurdles you have to go through to get one, I understand that immmigration is a huge issue - but the key word mentioned above is ILLEGAL - and we shouldnt forget that.

Enter illegally, and we'll give you an amnesty to stay. Is this the message to send? No. Only legal migrants should be allowed to stay, otherwise we encourage people to use dangerous methods of entering the UK, and discriminate against those who can't, as well as further reduce trust in the system - only helping the BNP more.

I expect public opinion will be very much against. Cameron should make a statement opposing this as soon as possible before he gets accused of leaping on a bandwagon.

I'm not saying an amnesty is a good idea - it probably isn't - but I wish people could steer clear of the 'all immigrants are scroungers and criminals' mindset. Many immigrants make extraordinary sacrifices to get to this country, not so they can claim benefits, but so they can work hard, earn money and support their families. It's really a shame so few english people share their entrepreneurial zeal.

There's no doubt that immigration remains a major electoral issue, and there is a way of approaching that will not leave our opponents shouting about the 'nasty party'. Rational and well-enforced immigration laws and border controls would in fact be a compassionate policy, tackling the people-smuggling and sex-slavery that has become a major problem. The fact remains though that immigration, correctly handled, is of positive benefit to this country - we need more workers and taxpayers, especially in light of the looming pensions crisis.

Immigration can’t become a game of Grandmother’s Footsteps – a matter of getting to the safe-zone before being spotted. Our immigration policy has to be transparent and enforced, even belatedly.

I’m all for a debate on the rate of immigration – a debate on the speed at which we can absorb people – but such debate is meaningless if the government is unable to enforce its decisions and is forced to resort to amnesties.

TC - the issue here is that it is illegal surely. Are we saying that economic migration is acceptable, and that once you get here you can stay - even if you dont go through the proper channels. I understand your points - but I think this is a very dangerous message to send out.

Illegal economic migration is bound to have the effect of reducing living standards for existing workers - as the illegal economic migrants don't have to be offered anything like the terms and conditions that indigenous workers are used to.

From a political point of view, the creation of a huge underclass of poorly-paid workers is bound to destroy the Conservative vote in the long run.

DavidB @ 19:40 writes: "Enter illegally, and we'll give you an amnesty to stay..."

On the other hand, enter legally and you get shafted.

Do you know what I have NEVER been able to understand? Why is it always hordes of MEN
queuing up at Calais? Why dont the women feel like chancing their arm in numbers comparable to men?

surely the issue here is not how many illegal immigrants we've got, but the labour incompetence in the handling of immigration that has led to such a situation that they now are even considering an amnesty. if labour weren't so incompetent, the situation wouldn't be this bad. it's labours mess, they should take responsibility and clean it up.

"Rational and well-enforced immigration laws and border controls would in fact be a compassionate policy, tackling the people-smuggling and sex-slavery that has become a major problem. The fact remains though that immigration, correctly handled, is of positive benefit to this country - we need more workers and taxpayers, especially in light of the looming pensions crisis. "

i agree completely TC. we need to take a compassionate approach to immigration, including much quicker deportation for illegal immigrants and good border controls. on the daily politics the other day, they showed an illegal immigrant who worked, paid taxes and had been here for 6 years and had set down roots and had a family, he was then arrested and deported one morning without warning leaving behind a child. How can that be right. he shouldn't have been here. but labour incompetence meant he was here much longer than he should have been - long enough to set down roots. it is labour incompetence alone that is to blame.

Some immigration is necessary, but it is unfair and immoral to rely on illegal immigration to fill the gaps in the economy - immigrants who come here illegally will be exploited (ok they shouldn't be here so its their own fault, but still). an amnesty is not the answer, competent government is.

why would it be bad for the economy, think of the all the tax revenue we are missing out on.

Open the doors then wicks - dont worry about the strain to the transport system, health service... need I go on.

It has to be on a case by case basis, although if there was a National ID system then there would be more chance of determining quickly if someone had been authorised to stay or not and if they had been refused then remove them and if they weren't mentioned in the system then detain them and look at their case and determine whether they were International Terrorists or Fugitives from Justice, there shouldn't be any problem with people who come here to work and who pay their taxes so long as they aren't felons or political undesirables.

For all kinds of undesirables though deportation should be automatic and in fact if they are going to be executed or tortured then surely if someone has committed an offence here why bother jailing them here, why not said them back for their home country to deal with them.

I wish someone would deport me. No taxes to pay. somewhere warm where the beer is cheap and the women are warm - or the other way round

It's typical of a Labour Party cadre to say that the risk to illegal immigrants lies with British employers (i.e. capitalists) who exploit them.

What about the slavers who imported them as "indentured workers" to be sold for sex or drowned on the beaches of Morecambe?

Presumably Dromey sees the similarity between Slavers and good Socialists like the Trade Unions and Labour. Maybe the answer for those who traffic in slaves, guns or drugs is to set up the Union of Migrant Workers and become Union officials. Their victims already have to work hard & get shafted so the functionaries can live off their earnings - so that's just like the rest of us...

If you break the law you should be punished: Entering legally and breaking the law you get deported; Entering illegally and getting caught, you get deported. Simple and consistent.

I mean send, must've been a sort of freudian slip!

An amnesty would be madness and send out all the wrong signals. Why do we issue NI numbers without proper checks? We have become a soft touch and all the evidence points to the government being complicit in turning a blind eye to it in private, only doing anything when its exposed to public gaze.

The reasons as has been pointed out is that the government actually wants cheap labour. The answer is to make our own labour work for a living instead of having an easy life on benefits. But this would be unpopular - something no modern government will do willingly.

82% on the population growth in the draft East of England Plan is from migration into the region from other parts of Britain. We need to ask what is driving this migration. Is it overcrowding elsewhere from international migration; especially in London?
There is an enormous infrastructure deficit in the South of England and a shortage of water.
This mass movement of people is generating resentment... BNP successes in Epping Forest.
There is no denying some level of immigration is required as our birth rate falls and we need workers to sustain economic growth but it must be controlled and justified.
An amnesty would send all the wrong messages and those here illegally may have the wrong skills for our country's long term needs.

Having read the story linked to by Richard North, I have to say that we have the typical New Labour approach to crime.

1) Don't deal with the real criminals, thats too difficult.
2) Make new rules that turn ordinary people into unwitting criminals.

We need immigrants, but which part of illegal don't they understand?

We are conducting a survey on amnesty for illegal immigrants in the UK and the USA for the next 6 months at http://www.skillipedia.com . We want to hear opinions from normal people - not political parties or think tanks.

Your opinions or feedback are much appreciated


In my country (Scotland) ve haf a saying.

"Enoch was right"

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