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Poll: Health and immigration seen as election priorities

Health is still seen as the top priority for political parties in the forthcoming general election, according to the results of a ComRes roll for ITV News.

Health overtook immigration as the top election priority in a poll earlier this month Credit: Peter Byrne/PA Wire

Half of all respondents said health is the most important issue, closely followed by controlling immigration (49%).

Labour (32%) is the party most trusted on the NHS, while Ukip (33%) is the party most trusted to control immigration.

Two in five people (21%) said they trust the Conservative Party most to control immigration - a five percentage point increase since the last poll.


Keith Vaz: Immigration system is in 'intensive care'

The troubled British immigration system has "moved from A&E into intensive care", according to the chairman of the influential Home Affairs Select Committee.

Keith Vaz said there were 89,000 missing migrants and a backlog of 343,000 visa applications at the Home Office.

Keith Vaz told ITV News Political Correspondent Libby Wiener that it was up to politicians including the Prime Minister to take action on exit checks for migrants.

Cameron: Only Tories offer 'competence' on immigration

The Prime Minister has insisted that only the Tories can offer "competence" on dealing with immigration and his plans to reform European welfare rules would be an "absolute requirement" in his proposed renegotiation of the UK's links with Brussels.

Cameron: Only Tories can offer 'competence' on immigration'. Credit: PA

An influential Commons committee has highlighted a series of failures in the immigration system but the David Cameron claimed "real progress" had been made in addressing the issue and voting for Labour or Ukip would deliver "chaos".

But the scale of the challenge faced by the Tories, who had set a goal of reducing net migration to the "tens of thousands", was underlined by the scathing Home Affairs Select Committee report.


Poland warns it will block bid to slash EU migrant benefits

Polish leaders have warned they will block David Cameron’s bid to clamp down on EU migrants claiming benefits, unless the rules will apply to British citizens as well.

The Prime Minister wants to stop migrants from claiming benefits for the first four years after they arrive in Britain, and kick out anyone who fails to find work after six months.

But Polish minister Rafal Trzaskowski told BBC's Newsnight that he believes the plans would go against all existing laws, and warned Poland would vote against the change.

If one wants to get away with all the benefits that are enshrined in the regulation of EU and treat immigrants from EU differently, and for example only pay benefits after four years of their stay in Britain or extradite people who can't find work, that would be against all the existing laws of the EU and obviously that would be a red line for us.

When it comes to changing the rules in the EU, when it comes to social support and so forth, when it comes to undermining the existing laws, obviously we are going to react quite strongly and we are going to be against.

– Rafal Trzaskowski, Polish minister

Leaders Live policy video: Immigration

"Immigration is one of Britain's biggest problems, and I'm concerned that I don't trust our government to sort it out effectively," says YouTuber Harry Hitchens.

"Immigration and emigration have reached a record high ... There are 100,000 people more coming in [to the UK] than going out," he says.

Hitchens plans to grill political leaders about this when they take part in Bite The Ballot's Leaders Live events. What will you ask?

Swiss voters firmly reject curbs on immigration

Swiss voters overwhelmingly rejected proposals on that would impose strict curbs on immigration.

The proposals were a reaction to fears foreign workers are eroding Swiss Alpine culture. Credit: Reuters

The measures reflected a growing sense that Switzerland is under siege by foreign workers eroding its Alpine culture.

The proposal, backed by the right-wing Swiss People's Party, that aimed to cut annual immigration by three-quarters from current levels in order to reduce the strain on Switzerland's pristine natural environment was rejected by 74% of voters.

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