This article and interview with Roger Casale was first published by Polish Daily News, 5 Jun. 2014
To read the article in Polish, click here
The increasing popularity of UKIP, the anti-European, anti-immigration party in Britain will force Prime Minister David Cameron to shift to the right, says Roger Casale, Chair of New Europeans.
New Europeans is a membership association set up to champion free movement rights in Europe.
Cameron will feel the pressure. He has to deal not only with the UKIP without (Nigel Farage’s party), but also with the UKIP tendency inside his own party (the Eurosceptics).
Farage’s rhetoric will continue to drive David Cameron to adopt more right wing positions on Europe.
With regard to a possible future enlargement of the European Union, e.g. to Serbia, David Cameron is likely to call for longer transition periods before the new member state can enjoy full free movement rights.”
According to Roger Casale, the strength of feeling against migration will push the Conservative party to restrict access to social benefits for newcomers.
"This again is motivated by short-term political tactics aimed at closing down support for UKIP.”
It is bad policy though. We know that people do not come to the UK to claim benefits. On the contrary, people come here to work.
In fact some would argue that it would be a good idea to give people support when they first arrive, as this is when they will need it most. Britain needs people to come to the UK to do jobs, which Brits either lack the skills or the motivation to do themselves.
Roger Casale, also acknowledged that the Labour Party had done little to resist the populist anti-immigration rhetoric of other parties and some Labour politicians had even used this language themselves.