In an unprecedented critique of his own party, Senior Conservative Party member Sir Jacob Rees-Mogg has sent a sharp warning to UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak. The urgency of the message is crystal clear: Take immediate action or risk losing the upcoming general election. Drawing parallels with the stagnant governance of Henry VI, a condition unseen for over six centuries, Rees-Mogg compared Sunak's administration to an inertia that could spell doom for the party.
A Crisis of Trust
At the core of Rees-Mogg's criticism is the government's glaring failure to effectively address the immigration issue. Recent statistics reveal a worrying trend - net migration has risen to a record high of 745,000. Rees-Mogg contends that this failure to control immigration numbers amounts to a betrayal of the electorate's trust, a misstep that could potentially lead to the Conservative Party's downfall in the next election. This issue has sparked a fierce internal conflict within the party, with figures such as former home secretary Suella Braverman describing the statistics as a 'slap in the face' to voters.
The Braverman Plan and Internal Rifts
Rees-Mogg has publicly backed Braverman's plan to reduce legal migration. The strategy includes measures such as ending the graduate visa route and hiking the salary threshold for migrants. Current Home Secretary James Cleverley is reportedly considering these measures. However, the situation has ignited a backlash among other Conservative MPs. Immigration minister Robert Jenrick, for instance, has proposed a cap on NHS and social care visas and a prohibition on foreign care workers bringing dependents to the UK. This plan has garnered the support of former Conservative leader Iain Duncan Smith, but has also met resistance from some cabinet members due to potential ramifications on the NHS.
Prime Minister's Acknowledgement and Promises
Amid the rising tensions and criticisms, Prime Minister Sunak has acknowledged that immigration levels are 'too high'. He has pledged to address the issue with Downing Street committing to leave 'no stone unturned' in their efforts. Business Secretary Kemi Badenoch has echoed the call for stricter immigration measures. However, the question remains: Will these promises translate into effective action or will they remain mere rhetoric? As the country awaits the government's next move, a seemingly inert administration must shake off its lethargy or face the consequences at the ballot box.