Election ignores voters’ concerns around mass immigration

By Leith van Onselen

Many of us were hoping in vain that a Shorten-led Labor Government would follow the will of the electorate and lower Australia’s immigration intake back to sensible historical levels:

Sadly, the opposite is true. In February, Labor’s shadow immigration minister, Shayne Neumann, committed to a turbo charged migrant intake:

Mr Neumann said that if Labor wins the next election, their government would take the “best advice” on setting the immigration intake level.

“I have said before 190,000 was about right previously. We will get the best advice and set the level accordingly,” the Shadow Immigration Minister said.

“I haven’t seen any evidence that will justify [cutting down the immigration intake], and the Liberals have never provided us with any evidence with relation to that.“

Labor then committed to doubling the humanitarian intake to 32,000, while also opening the floodgates to potentially millions of elderly migrants.

The Coalition, while better on this issue, has still opened multiple pathways for foreign workers to gain entry into Australia. Reflecting this, the April Budget projected increased net overseas migration (NOM) over the forward estimates:

With NSW projected to add nearly 600,000 people over the next four years and VIC around 650,000 people:

Whereas the latest overseas arrivals and departures figures point to a sharp lift in NOM:

Ignored in all of this are Australian voters, who overwhelmingly favour a lower immigration intake, as illustrated by most recent opinion polls:

  • Newspoll: 56% want lower immigration;
  • Essential: 54% believe Australia’s population is growing too fast and 64% believe immigration is too high;
  • Lowy: 54% of people think the total number of migrants coming to Australia each year is too high;
  • Newspoll: 74% of voters support the Coalition Government’s cut of more than 10% to the annual permanent migrant intake to 163,000 last financial year;
  • CIS: 65% in the highest income decile and 77% in the lowest believe that immigration should be cut or paused until critical infrastructure has caught up;
  • ANU: Only three out of 10 Australians believe the nation needs more people;
  • Newspoll: 80% of NSW voters do not want the state’s population to increase.
  • Australian Population Research Institute: 72% of voters say Australia does not need more people; 50% want immigration to be reduced.

Australia’s major political parties continue to treat us with contempt in running immigration at such extreme levels, which will only worsen under Labor.

The term “unrepresentative swill” comes to mind.

Vote #1 Sustainable Australia in tomorrow’s Federal Election.

[email protected]

Unconventional Economist
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  1. New tack – I am hoping with the balance of power in the NSW Upper House we can lobby Mark Latham to run a state royal commission in to NSW Universities. Start chipping away at the population ponzi edifice piece by piece.

    • C.M.BurnsMEMBER

      Universities have nothing to do with State governments. On what jurisdiction or legal framework would a state RC have to look into universities ?

      • Universities are established under state government acts and are state institutions. The fed govt forks out the money but constitutionally they belong to the states.

    • The real long term root cause solution is to overhaul the economy. Right now parties cannot endorse a low migration intake because it’s the only thing preventing a crash on their watch. I support labors policies on reigning in investment dollar returns and NG simply because it erodes the unproductive speculator economy. Hopefully some of the investment will return to actual productive uses. From there we can afford to not rely on mass immigration to prop up the economy.

  2. We have been an immigrant nation for over 200 years now, and have developed a diverse multi-cultural society that most other countries can only envy

    There is just no evidence that Australians, when push comes to shove, are unwilling to support higher immigration. Particularly when that higher immigration is a result of a rigorous and thorough screening process, and when the program itself is structured in such a way that supports the current net wealth and employment so many ordinary hard working Australians.

    Australians are an accepting, tolerant and pragmatic peoples. We will always eschew the worst xenophobic tendencies that have stymied economic and social progress in so many countries.

    • Their generosity appears to extend to pay the health care of any elderly parent that happens to turn up in doing so throw under the bus the older Australian who actually paid for the current system, just when they need it most. This treasonous policy built by political expediency shows what happen when one gets in between self serving ambitions politicians and high office. The care not whom they steamroll in their treasonous wake.

    • True, but we don’t want unaffordable housing, crowded hospitals, schools and roads… so there is always that..

    • “There is just no evidence that Australians, when push comes to shove, are unwilling to support higher immigration”
      That ignores all the polls referred to by UE. It is not permitted to be an election issue because of the greed of the sponsors of both sides of politics who gorge themselves on the profits of Big Australia and socialise all the losses via the states supplying schools , hospitals etc. Those ratbags are being generous with other peoples money.

    • “There is just no evidence that Australians, when push comes to shove, are unwilling to support higher immigration.”

      Did you see the poll results at the bottom of the article? If you’d like more evidence then maybe an independent agency should be commissioned by the government to find it – unless they really don’t want to know?

      • Clive, he/she is either a CCP bot, or a residential care property developer, or other such biassed gouger lol

      • “result of a rigorous and thorough screening process” if only it was. 15 years ago it was, not now.

    • There is just no evidence that Australians, when push comes to shove, are unwilling to support higher immigration.

      Apart from all the evidence. Typical spruiker nonsense…just assert rubbish in the face of reality. Repeat as often as possible until it becomes truthy.

      Wait…is this satire? It’s so hard to tell the difference between Dr Demography type mad rambling and satire these days.

      • The funny thing is, if the global population had been as mobile 150 – 200 years ago as it is today, Straya would have long looked like a mixture of England, India and Hong Kong by the time the Great British Empire split up.

        What really happened, of course, was the global population mobilized by the Great American Empire facilitated similar movements of peoples, if at a greater scale.

    • Why do so many people equate a desire to reduce immigration numbers with xenophobia or racism? They are completely different things! A relatable example; a person can want to raise children, maybe they’d like to have 2 kids of their own. If this person also said they definitely would not want to have 8 children, that doesn’t mean they hate children.

    • Let’s not confuse the neoliberal extreme growth policies that are focussed on generating massive consumer markets at all costs, including at the expense of environmental sustainability, institutional stability, infrastructure capability and equality, with immigration.

    • ErmingtonPlumbingMEMBER

      “There is just no evidence that Australians, when push comes to shove, are unwilling to support higher immigration.:

      Well let’s see and put it to the Australian People like we did with Gay Marriage.

  3. Labor is texting migrant enclaves encouraging their vote to further open borders vis a vie the parental visa.

    • John Howards Bowling Coach

      Robert I think that the VoteFlux idea is interesting but I fear it would be highjacked the same way there is a branch stacking action or invasion into existing parties by single focus type groups

  4. Not just the election ignoring voters. The SMH endorses Shorten. One of the points was that Labor has immigration sorted.

    • I saw that. Shocking. The comments page is, of course, a large echo chamber. Not one dissenting view.

      • I was talking about endorsing Shorten. Not a word on immigration. Plenty of climate hysteria too. From boomers who have raped the younger generations and are now concerned for their grandchildren.

  5. Two years ago I expected this election to be decided by the most important issue – mass immigration and what it’s doing to Australian people – their day to day lives, their futures, their children, the environment, culture, crime and safety, corruption – the list goes on and on.

    I thought Australians would be switched on about mass immigration by now, even in 2019, like they overwhelmingly are in USA and most of Europe. I thought one of the major parties would be switched on. But unfortunately, no. The LNP could’ve easily had a whitewash win upon this issue alone but the party is overrun with absurdly incompetent men and women and is not only doing nothing for Australians but flagrantly disregarding the country’s citizens and royally destroying their well-being for the sake of mates, corruption, party doners, behind the scenes deals and blatant self-interest.

    It’s pure incompetence and destruction of a society.

    • You’d better wake up and face the reality that democracy and elections are all façade, as they always have been.

  6. The party duopoly must be broken so that social engineering via migration is no longer used as a cynical ‘economic’ and ideological tool. This will take another 3 years as the disenchantment with Bill Shorten grows, and with it, a greater grass roots opposition to mass immigration.

    Currently, political opposition to mass immigration has been too timid and ‘small target’. Most Australians are not primality concerned about “over development” and this vastly underrates the fundamental issue which is far more basic and requires people able to speak to more sophisticated concepts that the party duopoly has dumbed down by simply refusing to talk about. The rejection of ‘elite’ politics and governance by finger wagging is coming to an end in the west. Political “leadership” is not turning your back on public values and democratic and cultural will and then lecturing the public that they are wrong.

    Australia’s multicultural consensus is fracturing under mass immigration as no amount of finger wagging and quips that this is motivated by “racism” will prevent a nasty division forming in our society – that no one will benefit from. It is fundamentally due to a relatively common cultural, environmental and democratic ambition at odds with our political representation. These issues cut to the vision that common people have about what Australia should be; this is not a country where mass immigration can be influenced by industry or open boarder nutters or where you buy your way in. The vast majority of people wish to maintain their amenity, culture and environment for future generations and have no enthusiasm for Big Australia.

    If our politicians no longer reflect the will of the Australian people, and respond to lobby groups to attain power, they are the enemy of democracy.

    Credible independents and an expanded cross-bench is the way we must go. But without political leadership in issues concerning democracy, environment and what Australia as a nation state should represent (and stand for as a Republic) mass immigration politics remains in the toddlers pool. My hope is that this election will make that clear. We need people with integrity to go to Canberra and wrest the immigration leaver back from the apparatchiks, reactionaries and political class and put it back into the hands of the people. You won’t do that without conversations that will attract controversy. That’s why SAP will not get anywhere until that nettle is grasped. There is no way to do this using small target politics and by pulling punches.

    • We still need immigration, but not as much. We all know that makes sense, but this is not about logic or sense, it’s about economic GDP growth via “consuming demand” of everything… Makes no difference to the muppets that the tax drain is on the plebs, or the jobs are not for the locals, because we all don’t have the experience no matter how many quals etc you have. Ask most Aussie barristers with multiple degrees in all sorts of sectors. It’s pretty frustrating for the young. I coached an under grad engineer through uni, and about a month ago he got a job in the US and they say we need more, but all he heard was not enough experience here. We’re the wrong sort of workers maybe?? I’m not sure what we can do and I just hope that the independents and SAP will help in the senate.

      • The success of our multicultural population was in a very large part due to immigration from failed economies post-WW2. That’s a tradition I would like to continue with an emphasis on refugees and people who contribute culturally. Hence, I’m not in the least bit anti-immigration – it’s the type of immigration that matters. I’m totally against immigration linked to ideology and lobby groups who see it as a way to make profit. Cynical mass immigration inspired by globalists devalues humans as well as the nation, as it is no longer driven by a social and cultural objective. It is a dangerous ideology that is in the process of blowing up, like all ideologies eventually do. This one has been allowed to run for far too long because it is bi-partisan – and that’s the problem.

      • The success of our immigration program is entirely based on the average IQ of the people we are letting in:

        UK: 100
        Italy: 102:
        Poland: 99
        China: 105 (though even during the gold rush their collectivist nature was a problem – but second generations were Aussies)
        Vietnam: 94 (good folks but still some gang drug dealing problems)

        It has nothing to do with their economic situation.

        Then the cracks start to appear: Lebanon 82. They harrass women at beaches and you get the Cronulla riots. Should have accepted Christian, Francophone Lebanese refugees only.

        India 82: widespread fraud and corruption. The high-IQ, high-caste Brahmins which previously made up Indian migration is overwhelmed by low-IQ male slum dwellers.

        Somalia: 68: outright violence and anarchy

        Instead of a convoluted testing and points system, we should just conduct an IQ test and analyse the genetics of the applicant. Register their biometrics so that there can be no fraud. Charge $10,000 for the procedure and the visa. Admit those at the top, with a diversity (one country no more than 10%), age (no one older than 35), and gender (no one country more than 50% male) filter.

        Genes for violence, drug addiction, and intelligence (amongst many others) are already known. We should be testing for them amongst the people we consider allowing in.

      • You’ve got to stop with that IQ thing. It is suck a pile of bollocks. Some entire nations would be classified as mentally retarded on average.

  7. Immigration is a “lagging” issue. It will be fixed when other issues like property bubble and money laundering get solved/fail

  8. CanuckDownUnder

    Unfortunately the Sustainable Australia Party is also ignoring concerns about the massive immigration intake swamping our cities, leading to congested roads, public transport, schools and hospitals, under- and unemployment, and anaemic wage growth.

    Where is their immigration platform? Despite it being their raison d’être it remains hidden behind some apologies about not being offensive. Instead their social media platforming invokes generic twaddle about stable jobs, better planning, affordable housing etc., a bunch of nonsensical PC branding that makes them indifferent from the LibLab mob. Stop overdevelopment NIMBYism!

    Even though we have seen left-wing parties in Europe speaking with clarity about the evils of excessive immigration here in Australia the SAP have decided it more important to offend absolutely nobody at any time. This SAP member will be holding his nose and voting PHON 1 tomorrow. What a waste of an opportunity!

    • Sustainable Australia is for (pro) immigration, at a cap of 70,000 permanent migrants per year. This will help maintain social cohesion and long term public support for immigration by addressing the public’s growing frustration with high immigration-driven rapid population growth.

      Australia should slow its population growth, aiming for a population target of around 26-30 million through to 2050.

      • CanuckDownUnder

        I know what their official stance is, it’s the reason I joined the party. I’m just dumbfounded at how politically inept they are, they’ve squandered a massive opportunity by refusing to put lower immigration front and centre in their platform. Instead of a Lower Immigration Now logo they throw up Stop Overdevelopment and look like a NIMBY party.

        Quit acting so scared of offending the hardcore Greenie vote, repeat after me SAP wanting lower immigration is not racialist!

    • I was listening to 3RRR (community radio in Melbourne) a couple of days ago. They had a guest on to talk about politics and the election. At the very end of the interview, literally the last thing that was said, was to beware of giving your vote to minor parties based on their name on the ballot paper.

      Sustainable Australia Party was given an example of a party with a misleading name, with the guest exclaiming it was actually an “anti-immigration party”. His inference was that this was a bad thing.

      It’s an interesting illustration of how any discussion about immigration has become. 3RRR listeners are probably very left leaning with heavy social and environmental consciousnesses. You’d think SAP’s platform should appeal to them – but no.

      • That’s exactly it. It’s a sensitive topic that SAP have done very well IMHO to bring out into the open and have a rational debate.

  9. Greens last for me of course. Labor second last at the last minute due to their insane and destructive grandparent importation scheme. SAP first, and then PHON, I guess. Sigh. I feel like throwing up at the thought of voting for any of these cnuts.

  10. HadronCollision

    There I was this morning minding my own business in Lismore reading the Echo (yes, yes, I know) when I happened upon a profile of all the candidates for Richmond. Apart from ripping into the Nats candidate and Justine Elliot, they had SAPs… And SAPs? An erstwhile fellow called, wait for it – Ronald, Ronald MacDonald. I sh$t you not. As well as being a SAPper, and liking sustainable parties, he knows how to handle a firearm. PLUS he has a cool name to boot. Think of all the newspaper comic strip gold!


    I went to the Sustainable Australia Partying page and clicked Candidates thinking I’d see candidates and was MOST confused when pointed (via text) to Elections at the main menu. Memo to SAP, fix your website basics hombres!

  11. Jumping jack flash

    Mass immigration is a symptom of the gargantuan amounts of debt we all have (and “need”)

    Its a bit like continuously requiring lower interest rates to ensure more debt is created to inflate the system and make nonproductive debt look productive: We need cheaper and cheaper workers to swap out the expensive ones and the lucky few pocket the difference, enabling them to take on more debt, repay existing debt and keep up with gouged living costs (gouged also because of the debt).

    Recently I believe we have reached that magical point where the rate at which wages are falling for workers and rising for executives and owners is pretty much cancelling each other out, therefore the statistics show very low wages growth. On average.

    There will be a time very soon where it will tip backwards and show overall falling wages. Again, on average.

    Don’t forget that we see that business profits are rising, and so are executive pays. It is quite obvious as to what is actually going on.

    No government is going to touch that though. Not that they could actually do anything except raise the minimum wage.
    Since hardly anyone gets paid the minimum, raising the minimum wage will do hardly anything.

  12. blindjusticeMEMBER

    Aussie media may not be doing much to cover the parent visa but SBS Punjabi is, and they dont think Labor are doing enough actually……..


    How fair is Labor’s parent visa fee?
    SBS Punjabi – ਐਸ ਬੀ ਐਸ ਪੰਜਾਬੀ
    We asked the Shadow Immigration Minister Shayne Neumann the basis for setting the parent visa fee at $2,500 and $1,250 in Labor’s Temporary Sponsored Parent Visa policy. When normal visitor visas are available for as little as $140, did Labor set the fee just because the government’s visa fee is thought to be very high, or whether it has been logically calculated? While Labor is promising to change the temporary sponsored parent visa significantly, claiming it would make it easier for parents of migrants to come to Australia, the party is retaining the requirements set by the coalition for people wanting to sponsor their parents for this visa.

  13. John Howards Bowling Coach

    I think the solution to this issue in the immediate term is a mass media exposure of the scamming and cheating done by the outsourced migration industry and the migrants themselves. It has only been done in specific areas until now but an exposure to the general public of the mass flooding of medicare, the cheating at unis, and the downside of overpopulated counties need to be tied together instead of being done in a single area such as the international student rort on the ABC. It’s got to be a scandal that all the other media channels pull together because media and news sources are totally fragmented now so something big on a single channel or the ABC does not get seen by most of the public. A national scandal will embarrass the current crop of reactionary politicians into action, not much else will. A knee jerk reaction is what is needed, the sort of thing they have engineered to rush through laws to undermine freedom of the people. Aussies are a lazy and increasingly leftie bunch, a cold slap in the face to wake them up to the fact they are paying to erode their own living standards is required, reasonable chatter will otherwise continue to be ignored ad cast as racism by the lefties who dominate the national agenda these days.

    • blacktwin997MEMBER

      Spot on JHBC. But which scandals would cause the most outrage and who would cover it? ABC seems allergic to anything even remotely reasonable and SBS is a pro-immigrant propaganda machine.

  14. Send a message to whoever wins federal government – VOTE 1 SAP tomorrow !!

    #SustainableAustraliaParty for PM 🙂

  15. A bit late in the day about talking about this.
    After the liberal clean out just hope Tones is re-elected, as a useful idiot he’ll use the immigration topic from the opposition. I am disappointed Mark Latham did not gate crash both major parties street/shopping center media events in NSW involving Shorten and Morrison to enhance ON’s Federal chances in western Sydney- where much of the population growth will occur.

  16. SAP lost my vote when Cameron Murray wrote his land expropriation article, downright evil communist trash in your ranks.

  17. Superunknown alert; be advised Blib Scooten is , wait for it, A COLLINGWOOD SUPPORTER

    shiiiiiiiiiiit homies

    A delicious conundrum