Google News, November 7, 2011
MPs are to press for a Commons debate on measures to curb immigration after an online petition gained the 100,000 supporters required for consideration.
Campaigners hailed their success in securing a six-figure backing within a week as evidence of acute public unease about the growing population.
Official projections show the UK’s population is on course to reach 70 million within 16 years.
An opinion poll commissioned by pressure group Migration Watch UK, which submitted the petition, suggested four fifths of English people think the country is crowded.
Labour MP Frank Field and Tory Nicholas Soames, co-chairs of the cross-party group on balanced migration, said they would push for it to be discussed in the chamber.
The popularity of the “No to 70 Million” petition will put pressure on the Backbench Business Committee to devote parliamentary time to the issue–though a debate is not automatic.