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Margaret Hodge throughout her career has been unprincipled, incompetent and ruthless.
I suspect she's very worried about her chances in being re-elected.

Of course. It's common sense. It would be even more common sense to stop immigration altogether and tell all would-be illegal immigrants and bogus refugees that they will be deported forthwith and never be given access to our public services.

Fat chance of that from hypocrit Hodge who is only speaking out because the BNP is on the rise in her seat.

She might give Barking Council a kick to sort out their housing first. Assuming they're still talking to her?

If this had come from a Tory spkesman, Labour would have been crying blue murder at the evil racist Tories going back to Howard's Way. But because she's Labour, it's alright then. Absolutely disgusting.

Are we going to support this or not should surely be the question?

It appears not. Another step towards Blair lite.

If only Labour would actually do something like this rather than do some strategic news placing...

So we leave a (popular) policy vacumn and someone fills it. Who are the fools ?

Hodge is right...well done her.

Hodge is right. But, I think we can all guess what her motives were.

The BNP could make hay with this in Barking.

Yet another statement that should have come from the Tory camp first.

I'm happy to be corrected, but as I understand it EU nationals from the so-called A8 countries (Czech Republic,Estonia,Hungary,Latvia,Lithuania,Poland &Slovenia) can't get social housing as they step off the boat.

As she's not advocating prevent asylum seekers from I wonder who she is talking about?

The country is so stimied by political correctness that we cannot just sort out commmon sense.
We have no idea how many people who use the NHS are actually British citizens (sorry, subjects), how many EU and how many other. Same for housing, welfare benefits - the list goes on.
I have never seen anything that shows if the amount of NHS resources spent on non-British EU citizens is in any way equivalent to the amount of EU healthcare our citizens (sorry - subjects) use from the rest of the EU. I suspect we are net losers.
As far as I am concerned, economic migrants should have no entitlement to social housing, or social benefits, or healthcare (other than emergency, and then we should have arrangements with their country of origin). They do, afterall, have a "mother country".
Genuine asylum seekers are another matter (but then dealing with that in a fair but tough way is a whole other thread).
There is a lack of clear criteria for those on the ground in the housing, benefits and NHS to work on, and not wanting to be classed as racists, will give them the benefit of the doubt.
Rules should be clear about how to become a British subject (and it should be very hard - such as speaking the language well, working here for at least 10 years and paying tax and NI etc). Those who are not British subjects should have no rights (except for emergency treatment as I said), unless reciprocal arrangements in place with their mother country that are audited and are equal expenditure on both sides.
The disgraceful thing is that the BNP have to be a threat for an MP to even mention this (I agree with previous comments that this is likely to be the reason why she is mentioning it).

Would this be the same Margaret Hodge, married to a millionaire, who as leader of Islington council, suffered the indignity of having local education taken away from the council as a result of gross failures and incompetence.
This champagne socialist has merely jumped on a band wagon, to protect her majority in South East London from campaigning by the BNP. A pre-emptive strike, on a subject that for many represents the factual truth, that NuLab have been unable to police our borders and PC attitudes allows the incomer precedence over the locals.
Hodge represents all that is wrong with NuLab, a schemimg, manipulative, incompetent who has bought her way into the party, which in no way represents her financial status.
A pox and plague on her, and one hopes that her comments will find the PC fanatics within the left gearing up for her scalp.
Now that would be schadenfreude.

"This is why Conservatives are calling for an explicit annual limit on the numbers coming here from outside the EU"

Are we?

“The people I’m talking about are economic migrants, not refugees.”

It sounds like, as a sop to potential BNP voters, she's proposing to penalise Eastern European immigrants - the 'economic migrants' - but not those from outside Europe - the 'refugees'. I expect this is just mood music.

Damian Green may be calling for limits on immigration from outside the EU but it is immigration from within the EU that is a massive part of the problem.

As it happens, economic migrants such as EU citizens are not entitled to public housing. Secondly, in order to be housed in a particular area you already have to demonstrate 'local connection'. Thirdly, refugees per se are not awarded points- only if they are families with dependent children and then they would get the same number of points as an indigenous person. In fact, because of their inability to demonstrate the local connection factor, they often alread get less choice where they are housed.

So quite what her point is.....

Re DavidDPB, I am not sure you are right on the local connection as I understand that Labour changed the riules allowing people from outside an area to register in other areas.

Some of them register in multiple locations as well which pushes up the waiting list stats.

Having lived in a part of Islington where the houses were at £1,000,000+ there were a great deal of people living there who were clearly Somali refugees... Sometimes in the terraced Georgian housing owned by the council.

The point David DPB is that Somali refugees tend to have larger families (as do immigrants in general - go look at the Office for National Statistics if you dispute this) - so they tend to get preferential treatment to UK citizens...

This causes tremendous resentment. I disliked the fact I was sharing a bedrooom to live in the area I chose but other people were being housed by the council on subsidised rents (which taxpayers pay for). I resent it even more when the people have clearly on just arrived and

a) have not contributed to society yet
b) should be grateful to be allowed into the UK - and not be too fussy about where they live - certainly not be put in expensive areas adjacent to the City of London

Nothing to do with race, everything to do with fairness.

It shows how pathetic Hodge, Byrne, Reid etc when they have to agree with the BNP on immigration. Over the past 10 years when they let immigration rip the cry when the Tories said this was to call us racists now they cynically steal our clothes.
Their reaction is not surprising because those of us who have followed politics since the early 60,s know one thing,,, when a person declares they are a socialist it also means they are hypocrit.

Well considering between the tory sell offs and labour following on suit. How can anything either of the parties say be held up for inspection. Whilst both parties try to nick clothes of the BNP after seeing how the voters who in ever increasing numbers are turning to the BNP.

It is ok to talk the talk but you got to walk the walk. And people want change and your time is up for the 3 stooges of politics. So you can call the BNP names and you can smear them all you like even like now nick some of the policies as your own. But when nothing gets done and things get worse thanks to all your incompetences people will turn to the only truly British Party.

"But when nothing gets done and things get worse thanks to all your incompetences people will turn to the only truly British Party."

Like they did in the last local elections? How many seats did you predict they would win? Wasn't it close to 100?

what was the first reaction of EVERY person in the UK when they heard this story?

"of course thats right, its a disgrace that we are in this position in the first place"

forget the noise around this issue and focus on that reaction. Any policy that sensibly addresses that reaction will get you elected by a landslide.

Hodge's proposal is absurd and potentially dangerous - or else (perhaps) she just hasn't explained it very well.

Whom is her gripe against, really? Is it third-generation-British members of ethnic minorities? I don't think so. Well, is it immigrants that have now been granted British nationality? But if they are now British, then they are now British, surely? What does it matter what they were before they were British?

There only seem to me to be two versions of this idea that could possibly make any sense at all. One would be to have a rule that said that residents in a local area took priority, for new housing, over incomers (any incomers - whether from Burnley, Birmingham or Baghdad). If this was what she wanted to to then it would make sense, except then why has she muddied the waters by going on about "indigenous" Britons - as if *that* were the issue?

The other version that potentially would make sense would be something that said that people that had settled permanently into Britain had priority over those that were here only temporarily. Then transitory migrant workers and asylum seekers would have lower priority. But Hodge explicitly stated that her policy was *not* to apply to asylum seekers, and she didn't give any indication that transitory migrant workers were her target. She talked instead about "economic migrants".

I think she's just trying to make some noises to counter the BNP in her area. It doesn't seem like a serious proposal to me at all, and I don't see why the media are giving her so much air-time...

1AM points out the rather ridiculous point that some people are housed at our expense, in areas that most of us can only dream of living in.

That is crazy whatever their ethnic identity or whatever passport they hold.

Just a cynical ploy to counter the BNP in her seat though the threat is more to her collegue in Dagenham. The truth is mainstream politicians will talk about these issues but they don't propose to do anything about them. The BNP thrive on the electorate's not unjustified disbelief in any action being forthcoming.

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