Rishi Sunak facing massive Tory revolt for breaking key immigration pledge - with even Braverman to stick the knife in

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak meets with teams coordinating the evacuation of British nationals from Sudan

Rishi Sunak is under mounting pressure to cut net migration

Jack Walters

By Jack Walters

Published: 15/05/2023

- 08:15

Updated: 15/05/2023

- 14:56

Leading Tory MPs will attend the National Conservatism Conference today as pressure mounts on Rishi Sunak to cut net migration

Senior Tories are rounding up on Rishi Sunak as the Prime Minister risks breaking a key Conservative immigration pledge.

Several Brexit-backing Tory politicians will meet in London today to put forward a more right-leaning message at the National Conservatism Conference.

Former Business Secretary and GB News presenter Jacob Rees-Mogg and Home Secretary Suella Braverman are among the Eurosceptic voices who will deliver keynote speeches at the event.

Levelling Up Secretary Michael Gove, a loyal disciple of Sunak who played a central role in the Vote Leave campaign, will also take to the stage on Tuesday.

Suella Braverman

Suella Braverman will put pressure on Number 10 to stick with its net migration commitment

GB News

Braverman, who finished sixth in the race to succeed Boris Johnson as Prime Minister and Conservative Party leader last summer, will use her appearance to put pressure on Number 10 to deliver its promise to reduce net migration.

The Home Secretary will argue “it’s not xenophobic to say that mass and rapid migration is unsustainable”.

She will add: “I voted and campaigned for Brexit because I wanted Britain to control migration.

“So that we all have a say on what works for our country. High-skilled workers support economic growth. Fact.

\u200bJacob Rees-Mogg

Jacob Rees-Mogg is expected to criticise Rishi Sunak over his decision not to scrap 4,000 EU laws


“But we need to get overall immigration numbers down. And we mustn’t forget how to do things for ourselves.

“There is no good reason why we can’t train up enough HGV drivers, butchers or fruit pickers.

"Brexit enables us to build a high-skilled, high wage economy that is less dependent on low-skilled foreign labour. That was our 2019 manifesto pledge and what we must deliver.”

Braverman’s comments could cause further splits in Sunak’s Cabinet which has been divided over the scale of immigration since the Brexit vote in 2016.

Michael Gove in Northern Ireland

Michael Gove will take to the stage at the National Conservatism Conference tomorrow


The Conservative Party romped to an 80-majority victory three years later with a manifesto commitment to bring overall numbers down.

However, official net migration figures could top one million this year and will likely exceed 700,000 in just a few weeks time.

Rees-Mogg, who perhaps surprisingly appeared to throw his weight behind Sunak's leadership in Bournemouth over the weekend, will also criticise the Leave-supporting Prime Minister over the United Kingdom’s departure from the European Union.

The North East Somerset MP is expected to say: “Rishi Sunak made a specific promise to scrap thousands of EU laws. He has broken it.

Rishi Sunak in the House of Commons

Rishi Sunak suffered a blow as the Tories suffered more than 1,000 net losses in the local elections earlier this month


“This is unfortunate, as one of his perceived virtues is his trustworthiness and the surrender to the blob risks exposing the Government to ridicule. It also risks making us poorer.”

He also told GB News: "I completely support the Home Secretary's view that there is a view in the Treasury that increased migration grows GDP, which is true up to a point, but doesn't grow GDP per capita if the people are coming in to carry out low-paid jobs and we don't have the infrastructure or the housing for continued mass migration.

"I think the Home Secretary is absolutely right and importantly it is right economically.

"The migration that we have should be for the highest-paid jobs and we need to ensure that low-paid jobs become better paid but are filled internally rather than from migration."

Jacob Rees-Mogg

Jacob Rees-Mogg spoke to GB News about immigration this morning

GB News

Sunak has come under pressure in recent weeks after the Government rowed back on its commitment to axe 4,000 EU laws and the Tory Party suffered net losses of 1,063 in local elections held earlier this month.

The Prime Minister has already pledged to end the UK’s illegal Channel crossings, with more than 45,000 people making the perilous 21-mile journey last year.

But it remains to be seen if Sunak will back proposals to introduce tougher rules in an attempt to restrict foreign students from bringing in dependents.

Gillian Keegan, Sunak’s Education Secretary, reportedly resisted plans for dependents of foreign students in a move which eventually led to the watering down of the overall package.

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