Courier Mail discusses Pauline Hanson's stance on Immigration

Read as Pauline Hanson's immigration issue is discussed in today's Courier Mail. Pauline Hanson has called back to her now-infamous claims that Australia is being “swamped” by Asian immigrants as she renews calls to halt migration.

On the day new figures revealed Australia's migration intake had surged to a record high of 548,800 arrivals in the year to September, threatening the federal government's own efforts to ease levels, Senator Hanson said the warning she first made almost 30 years ago was proving true.

In an address to the Senate, the One Nation leader called for a plebiscite to ascertain what Australians believe is an appropriate level of immigration, saying the “majority” did not want a “Big Australia”.

She was supported by One Nation colleague Malcolm Roberts and United Australian Party senator Ralph Babet but was ultimately defeated.

In her speech, Senator Hanson cast minds back to the first speech she made as the Oxley MP in 1996, where she said: “I believe we are in danger of being swamped by Asians.”

On Thursday she said: “I was called a racist, of course, by the major parties and big media who are in lock-step of a big Australia. But today, seven out of the top 10 source countries for immigration to Australia are in Asia - including four out of the top five - and the numbers are out of control.

“Was I right? You'd never admit it. But yes, I am.”

The latest Australian Bureau of Statistics figures show the net overseas migration figure increased by 60.3 per cent on the previous year.

Opposition immigration spokesman Dan Tehan said despite the government's insistence otherwise, “Labor's Big Australia” was just getting bigger, comparing the annual increase to “almost as many migrants ... as the 600,000 fans who saw Taylor Swift across seven sold-out concerts at the MCG and Accor Stadium”.

“If you look at the first quarter for this financial year, the numbers continue to grow,” he said. “As Australians will rightly ask, where are all these people going to live? We're in the middle of a housing crisis.

Mr Tehan said the government needed to urgently cut migration to alleviate the pressures on housing, infrastructure, government services and the environment.

“In December, (Prime Minister) Anthony Albanese said ‘we have a plan to fix migration', well, the Australian people are still waiting to see this plan in action,” he said.

Queensland's population grew by 143,600 people in a single year, the largest increase recorded since at least the 1980s, with overseas migration the biggest driver of growth.

Queensland's total population as of September 2023 was 5,495,500 people.

The biggest driver of Queensland's population growth was from overseas migration, with a net increase of 87,954 people. This is the largest net increase from overseas migration ever recorded in Queensland.

Labor on Wednesday recommitted to its crackdown on fraudulent visa applications and dodgy higher education providers. The government also confirmed it would clamp down on a visa loophole that allows international students to abandon university courses for cheap private colleges, known as “ghost colleges”.