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Marine Le Pen wants to hold a referendum on immigration. Screenshot from Twitter

French largely in favour of referendum to limit immigration

While Emmanuel Macron wants to “activate” the expulsion of illegal immigrants to boost his re-election, including that of delinquents and perpetrators of terrorist acts, most of the French are in favour of holding a referendum on the issue of immigration, a poll showed.

Published: June 18, 2021, 11:05 am

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    Paris

    With the issue of immigration remaining one of the thorniest as the 2022 presidential race approaches, a poll conducted by the Consumer Science & Analytics (CSA) institute for CNews showed that the French were overwhelmingly in favour of the holding of a referendum to limit immigration.

    Some 30 percent of French people said “yes, absolutely” to the question of whether they wanted a referendum on immigration, according to the poll sampling of a thousand respondents and posted online on June 17.

    With 27 percent of respondents answering “mostly yes” to the same question, the total “yes” responses rises to 62 percent.

    As for those who oppose it, 19 percent of French people “not at all” support this idea and 18 percent are “rather not” in favour while 1 percent of respondents chose not to respond.

    It is actually young people aged between 18 to 24 who were in favour of this referendum to limit immigration, with 68 percent of them supporting it. Some 60 percent of respondents aged between 25 to 34 supported idea, against 63 percent among 35-49 years, and only 58 percent for 50-64 years.

    Respondents affiliated with the left represented the largest part of those disapproving of this vote (61 percent against, in total), while respondents close to the right were largely in favor (93 percent in total). At the National Assembly, this figure even reached 98 percent.

    The referendum on immigration is one of the “strong decisions” promised by Marine Le Pen in the event of a presidential victory in 2022.

    In March, she explained this intention by the fact that “the French people have been in disagreement for decades with the policy which is being carried out in matters of immigration”. She had earlier also promised that her first decision would be to “control immigration by taking control of our borders, of our visa policy”.

    On June 10, in the presence of Jean Castex, Gérald Darmanin, Jean-Yves Le Drian and a representative of Eric Dupond-Moretti, the President of the Republic asked for “a better efficiency in the expulsion of illegal immigrants”. Among them, Emmanuel Macron primarily targeted the perpetrators of terrorist acts, those on file for radicalization and those who have committed crimes.

    During the same meeting, an adviser noted that “the acceptability rate for immigration [is becoming] lower and lower”.

    Underlining the strengthening of border controls over the past four months, the Minister of the Interior announced on June 17 the marked increase in arrests of illegals.

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