Liam Fox: 'Ditch' immigration policy to win Ukip votes

David Cameron must ditch the pledge to bring net migration down to tens of thousands and instead focus efforts on curbing the number of low-skilled workers heading to Britain to stave off the threat from Ukip, a former defence secretary has said.

Council leader fears Tory majority will be lost to Ukip

The Prime Minister has been accused of undermining the party's chances of winning at the next election over its immigration policy, according to the Conservative leader of Guildford Council.

In a letter to Mr Cameron, Stephen Mansbridge said that he feared the borough would lose its Tory majority for the first time in 12 years and that MP Anne Milton would be defeated at the election because of government policies.

We have lost many Conservative Party members - indeed whole branches of the local association - due to carious government policies, and Ukip won over 20 per cent of the vote in the local elections last year in Surrey.

Immigration, the EU and gay marriage are frequently given as reasons for this.

Home Secretary dismisses immigration policy claims

Home Secretary Theresa May has dismissed claims that the Tories need to have a clearer narrative on immigration, after former defence secretary Dr Liam Fox warned the Prime Minister he would be guilty of "complacency" if he failed to address the damage Ukip could do at the ballot box.

In all honesty, whatever the Government does to reduced the pull factors that draw people to Britain, as long as there is such an enormous disparity in terms of income per head, there will be an overwhelming incentive for people to move from poorer nations to richer states.

– Theresa May, Home Secretary

Read: Liam Fox: 'Ditch immigration policy' to win Ukip votes

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Liam Fox: 'Ditch immigration policy' to win Ukip votes

David Cameron must ditch the pledge to bring net migration down to tens of thousands and instead focus efforts on curbing the number of low-skilled workers heading to Britain to stave off the threat from Ukip, a former defence secretary has said.

Former defence secretary Liam Fox. Credit: PA

Liam Fox warned the Prime Minister he would be guilty of "dangerous complacency" if he failed to address the damage Nigel Farage's party could do at the ballot box.

In an interview with The Sunday Telegraph, the Eurosceptic called for the party to drop the "statistical nonsense" and develop a "clearer narrative" on immigration.

Dr Fox said: "If the Tories are to bring back enough of these voters to win an overall majority at the election, then there needs to be a clearer narrative on immigration, stressing not only the need to restrict numbers, but also to determine which individuals, with what skills enter our country."