THE BLOG

Tories Lies on Stopping ECHR and Migrant Benefits

04/03/2013 19:15 GMT | Updated 04/05/2013 10:12 BST

In recent days, the political promises of the Tory party on withdrawing from the European Convention on Human Rights and curbing benefits to new EU migrants are blatantly false and can be shown to be so.

The Conservatives have no intention of fulfilling either promise because they simply cannot.

The Eastleigh by-election showed that voters are turning towards Ukip because they believe in our political message and also because they are sick of the 'lying liars' political class that we have in our country at present. This recent episode is an excellent case in point.

The Ukip policy on the European Convention or ECHR is quite straightforward. We wish to withdraw from this discredited shambles. Why? Because the European Court of Justice has become a danger to British democracy and an affront to human rights in general. The Convention has been used to protect and mother cuddle terrorists, rapists and preachers of hatred. Many ECHR rulings have been dangerous as well as ridiculous.

It is Ukip policy to withdraw totally from the jurisdiction of the ECHR and allow British judges to decide how British laws are implemented.

Of course, we can only withdraw from the ECHR if we extract ourselves from the expensive, bureaucratic and undemocratic EU. This is because the EU is acceding in its own right to the ECHR, enshrining the Convention in EU law which binds the UK.

In reply to a question Ukip leader Nigel Farage put to the European Commission in April 2011 it was confirmed by Commission Reding that "respect for fundamental rights as guaranteed by the European Convention on Human Rights is an explicit obligation for the Union under Article 6(3) of the Treaty on European Union... In the negotiations for the accession of new Union members, respect for the Convention and the case law of the European Court of Human Rights is treated as part of the Union acquis". Which means it is obligatory primary law.

It is clear that while we are part of the EU, the UK MUST be a signatory of the ECHR and implement its decision. It is impossible to withdraw from the ECHR without first withdrawing from the EU.

Due to barmy human rights law which derives from the ECHR, the UK government cannot deport convicted rapists and murderers to protect its own citizens. This is a situation which must be corrected as soon as possible. This state of affairs cannot be made right while the UK is a member of the EU, and a signatory of the ECHR.

So when minister Chris Grayling says "We need a dramatically curtailed role for the European Court of Human Rights in the UK", or Theresa May promises to withdraw from the ECHR in the next Tory Election manifesto, then they are either ignorant of the facts at best or lying to the people at worst. No sleight of hand from Mr Grayling or Mrs May will make any difference.

This brings us rather neatly onto a further promise by David Cameron to curb benefits and access to the NHS for new EU migrants from Romania and Bulgaria.

The integrity of this promise by Cast-Iron Dave has been undermined almost immediately by the Romanian foreign minister Titus Corlatean who yesterday said that he had "received official assurances from the British Government" that EU rules allowing migrants to claim benefits will be adhered to by the UK.

When Cameron speaks about trying to restrict new EU immigrants from Romania or Bulgaria from either coming to the UK post January 2014 or getting access to welfare benefits. He is either being disingenuous and misleading or ignorant of the facts.

European Commissioner Viviane Reding made clear in recent weeks that new Romanian and Bulgarian migrants to the UK will have the same rights as those already there. "It is necessary to have the same rights for the citizens all over Europe", Reding told BBC Radio 4's World at One.

Under UK rules a range of benefits - child benefit, child tax credit, state pension credit, jobseekers' allowance and unemployment support allowance - are only given to those with a "right to reside".

That is automatic for UK nationals, but residents from other EU countries have to pass a "right to reside" test. This can easily be bypassed by them claiming to be self employed. In addition, the European Commission is already taking the UK to the European Court of Justice to ensure that all EU citizens have the same right as UK residents.

It is clear that the only way to stop mass immigration from EU states to the UK and prevent abuse of the British welfare system, as well as leave the jurisdiction of the European Court of Human Rights is to leave the EU. No amount of grandstanding or bluster for Conservative Party leaders will change that simple fact.