The Australian people have never been consulted on the issue of Australia’s run away rates of immigration.
It time for that to change. The Government should get out of the way and let the people have their say!
Is the government too scared of political correctness to put it to the people? Especially since the majority are in favour of cutting immigration?
Unlike the same sex marriage plebiscite, an immigration plebiscite could be done cheaply at the next election.
Read the full story below:
Let voters decide on migration, says Pauline Hanson
One Nation leader Pauline Hanson is pushing for a plebiscite to be held in tandem with the next federal election to allow the Australian people to have their say on whether migration levels should be scaled back.
Senator Hanson will today give notice of her intention to introduce a plebiscite bill when the parliament resumes in August. She hopes to win government and crossbench support for the initiative.
The move to give Australians a say on the migration rate comes just four weeks ahead of the crucial Longman by-election in Queensland that is shaping as a key gauge on the health of the One Nation vote.
Senator Hanson told The Australian the people had “never had a say in the level of migration coming into Australia” and made a number of suggestions about how the question could be formulated.
“The question to be put would be along the lines of ‘what level of immigration should we be taking into Australia?’ or possibly even asking people ‘what is the population they can see that would be sustainable for Australia’s way of life and standard of living?’”
The migration rate has become an ideological flashpoint issue within the Coalition after Tony Abbott unveiled an alternative conservative manifesto in 2017 which included a cut to the immigration intake to relieve pressure on major population centres.
The Australian revealed in April that Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton had canvassed changes to the intake with Coalition colleagues.
The campaign for a plebiscite comes after a Lowy Institute poll showed that 54 per cent of Australians believed the number of migrants coming into the country each year was too high, an increase of 14 points on last year and 17 points on 2014.
Senator Hanson told The Australian: “You’ve got to have people who are actually voters in this country having a say on this.
“I do not support a plebiscite as was done with same-sex marriage — by postal vote.
“It should be done at the next general election.”
Mr Abbott has been advocating for the government to halve immigration levels to about 80,000 a year to allow for infrastructure to catch up with growing population numbers, earning him rebukes from colleagues including Trade Minister Steven Ciobo and Treasurer Scott Morrison.
West Australian senator Dean Smith has also taken up the issue, arguing that new curbs should be put on migration levels because overcrowding concerns had become a priority issue for voters.
In an interview with The Australian earlier this week, Senator Smith used data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics to argue that Australia’s labour force could double in the next 50 years to 26.8 million — creating a major challenge in keeping unemployment rates down. He also said that Australia’s yearly population growth rate of 1.63 per cent was higher than in Asia (0.9 per cent), North America (0.73 per cent) and 20 times higher than in Europe (0.08 per cent).
The Australian understands that Senator Hanson will not view government support for her plebiscite bill as a part of a quid pro quo that would see her voting in favour of the government’s corporate tax cuts.
“We have high levels of migration coming in from foreign students, visa holders, and foreign workers,” Senator Hanson said.
“The impact it’s having on Australia is overcrowding in our cities, the housing shortage and (the taking up of) jobs.
“Also, the government has been keeping up high immigration numbers to make their budget papers look good.”
Senator Hanson believed the government was relying on high immigration rates to underwrite GDP growth forecasts into the future.