TV panellists clash over Labour offer to voters

“Britons to be priority on council house lists” thundered the headline in The Times, announcing a Tory government plan to make people who migrate into the UK second-class citizens as far as housing allocation is concerned.

It’s a red herring: people with UK citizenship are already advantaged on housing lists because immigrants have to wait two years before they can be considered for social housing – they have to build up a history as taxpayers and so on.

The policy proposal is most likely an attempt to distract the public from the fact that the UK’s Conservative government has failed to meet its target for house building – if it even tried. Tories are motivated by profit and if fewer houses are available, demand goes up and people pay more.

This was all aired on the BBC’s Politics Live. Then American commentator Dr Frank Luntz spoke up. He took a wider view than the other panellists, considering the issue as an election strategy, and suggested that the Labour Party was perceived as prioritising people its leaders expected to vote for it, over those in greatest need – incensing Labour representative Barry Gardiner.

Here’s the exchange.

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