A promise which can't be delivered stores up trouble
Isn’t there an argument to say that if the deterrent strategy is effective, this will actually drive the number of boats UP in the short term, because it will create a premium on arriving before the regulations come into effect?
Voters favour rules based liberalism when it comes to immigration? Are you sure? Or are they just unaware of how many migrants are arriving in the UK now?
Last year to June 2022 the ONS states that 504,000 migrants (that is the net figure and they came mostly from Asia) were granted the right to stay in the UK long term. Before Brexit in 2016 it was 335,000 (about 50% form the EU I think) a record back then.
Freedom of Movement was a key issue in the Brexit campaign with Penny Mordaunt lying about the UK being invaded by Turks and the infamous poster put up by the Leave side featuring a queue of people waiting at the EU border who were supposed to then come to the UK.
Maybe rules based immigration isn't an issue because the public think as Brexit is "done" and as there is no Freedom of Movement anymore then the immigration issue has been dealt with. Not because the public has became more liberal since 2016.
I really doubt those who voted for Brexit to end Freedom of Movement would be pleased to see 504,000 migrants entering the UK so why isn't that the issue? Ignorance on the part of the public?
Maybe the public's negative attitude to the small boats policy is centred around that policy alone. They don't like it for what it is and because it won't work not because the public has become more liberal.