ALARM OVER SUPPORT FOR THE BNP
‘Six out of ten Britons back extremists over asylum’
(The International Daily Mail),
By Jonathan Oliver,
, pp 1-2, Tuesday, May 6, 2003
FRESH evidence of the alarming rise of the British National Party has emerged as a new poll reveals that six out of ten voters support its extremist stance on asylum seekers.
Following last week's town hall elections, which saw the BNP score Its best-ever results, an exclusive survey for the Mall discloses surprising sympathy for the extreme right party.
One in seven adults – 14 per cent – say they would consider voting for the racist party if there was a candidate in their area, while a further one in four support their aims, though they would not actually vote for them.
Most Britons oppose the BNP, with almost half describing it as 'thoroughly unpleasant'.
But the new evidence that some of its policies have struck a chord with Britain's voters will send a shockwave through the political establishment.
The poll will trouble politicians of all mainstream parties, who had hoped last week's BNP successes were a freak result, produced by the low turnout.
The YouGov poll for the Mail, conducted after the election results, finds that 62 per cent of people back the BNP's policy on targeting refugees and half endorse its hard-line policies on law and order.
Four out of ten indicated they approved of halting all further immigration.
Alarm as Britons support BNP
More than a third support the party's plans to send immigrants back to their country of origin, while just over a quarter
say it is right to allocate more council homes to white families. Support for BNP policies is similar among both men and women and young and older people.
The BNP, which wants to see an 'all-white Britain', gained 13 council places in Thursday's local elections, securing eight seats in Burnley, Lancashire – the scene of race riots among white and Asian youth – to become the official opposition.
It also had success in Midlands towns such as Stoke-on-Trent and Dudley, with little record of ethnic strife, and even won a seat in affluent Broxbourne, Hertfordshire, where the non-white population is just 3.9 per cent and there is virtually no unemployment.
Shahid Malik, a community activist and member of the Labour NEC, said: 'I just wish people could have seen them leave the hall with their Nazi salutes and their sieg heils
'These are the kind of people that the voters of Burnley supported. This was not a protest vote. We have clearly got a large and significant number of people in Burnley who are racist.'
Election round-up: Page 8
Do you approve or disapprove of the BNP's views on:
Cutting the number of asylum seekers:
Don't know 13%.
Sending back immigrants to their country of origin:
Don't know 18%,
Halting all further immigration:
Don't know 17%.
Allocating more council homes to white families:
Don't know 22%.