Jeremy Vine slapped down by Ann Widdecombe in row over channel migrants working | UK | News

January 27, 2024
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Former Brexit Party MEP Ann Widdecombe clashed with Jeremy Vine in a brutal debate about whether or not Channel migrants should be able to work. The former Tory MP claimed that the Government must “take control” of the issue before the question of letting Channel migrants work even arose.

A caller to the Jeremy Vine show, James in Cardiff, got the debate rolling. During a discussion on whether or not asylum seekers that had crossed into Britain from France should be able to work in the care sector, the caller said: “We are having these individuals go to work with the most vulnerable in our society in the care homes, and we have no idea who they are, we can’t do enhanced checks on them.

“It’s absolute insanity by rewarding these individuals with work.”

Mr Vine began his reponse, saying: “It’s no there’s not an easy option.” However, before he could get his words out, James hit back: “But Jeremy, it’s not your relatives these individuals will be looking after. They’re the most vulnerable in our society and I do not want that without records that we can check. The Government has lost its mind.”

After Mr Vine ended the call with James he engaged the former Employment minister in full-hearted debate.

The presenter said: “If someone’s crossed an ocean to get to this country, they’re going to give my mum very good care [if] they end up working in a care home.”

Ms Widdecombe retorted: “[You mean] if they end up disappearing into the underground economy…? Honestly we need to get control of our asylum system.”

“No one disagrees with that,” Mr Vine hit back.

However Ms Widdecombe struck another blow in return: “But is that is fundamental to all [this]. Why are you focusing on something that’s ten points down the line?”

Mr Vine replied: “But we don’t discuss the same thing every day,” to which Ms Widdecombe said: “I’m not inviting you to. I’m just saying when you’re inviting me to discuss migrants working I’m pointing out that is the end of a very long line and we haven’t even got the first bit right.”

Mr Vine attempted to say something back before turning to his right and saying: “Ok, alright.”

The clip has been viewed over 14,000 times on X, formerly Twitter, and one angry viewer said of the debate: “Let’s just let anyone with no qualifications or checks look after the elderly who have paid into the system their whole life only to be subjected to abuse or worse because a migrant has more rights than them or us”.



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