A recent poll suggests that nearly half of all Australians want to ban Muslim immigration to the country.
Polls conducted by Essential Research, an Australia-based survey company, found that 49% of Australians supported a ban on Muslim immigration. Among Australians who voted for the country’s conservative coalition, the proportion was 60%. Among Labor Party voters, the proportion was 40% of the country’s Labor voters.
Older Australians were much more likely to support a ban than younger Australians.
Survey participants cited what they saw as the inability of Muslims to integrate into Australian society as their primary reason for voting in favor of a ban, with the threat of terrorism and a perceived lack of shared values as the second and third reasons respectively.
The polls come after the recently elected Senator Pauline Hanson — who ran on an anti-immigration platform — gave her first speech to the Australian Senate, during which she said, “[Muslims] share a culture and ideology that are incompatible with our own.”
The number of Australians opposing a ban on Muslim immigration was “too a big a number to say it’s an unrepresentative rump that should be shunned from polite society,” Peter Lewis, a researcher at Essential Research, told the Sydney Morning Herald.