Swiss politician says country has too many Germans

The immigration debate rhetoric is heating up in Europe. I don't place too much stock in this one comment (today), but it does show where the social mood is at since these types of comments are aimed at shoring up a politicians base.

Politician Sparks Uproar with Call to Limit German Workers
A Swiss politician has prompted a heated debate after suggesting that there are too many German immigrants in her country. "We really have too many Germans in the country," Natalie Rickli, a member of Switzerland's parliament with the right-wing populist Swiss People's Party (SVP), said during a television talk show on Sunday.

The actual topic of discussion on the talk show, broadcast on Zürich local television station TeleZüri, was supposed to be Switzerland's decision last week to curb immigration from eight central and eastern European countries. Last Wednesday, the Swiss cabinet, the Federal Council, announced it had decided to invoke the so-called "safeguard clause" in its agreement with the European Union on the free movement of persons. The move will significantly reduce the number of jobseekers from these countries allowed to enter Switzerland for a one-year period.
But that initiative apparently does not go far enough for Rickli. On the talk show, she argued that the safeguard clause should also apply to Germans. Many people shared her view that there were "too many Germans" in Switzerland, she said.

The other guests on the show reacted with shock, but Rickli kept going. "The parliament should have already activated the safeguard clause in 2009, when it would have also affected the Germans," she said, adding that Switzerland had a problem with the sheer scale of immigration. She said that she had already received a lot of mail from Swiss people saying that they had lost their jobs because cheaper Germans had been hired instead.

Rickli's comments reflect her SVP party's anti-EU and anti-immigration policies. Although it suffered a slight drop in support in the most recent election, the SVP has risen to become the strongest party in Switzerland since the 1990s. On the day after her talk show appearance, Rickli said that she had gotten many positive reactions to her proposal.
Many politicians and pundits incorrectly ascribe racial or ethnic motivations for anti-immigration sentiment, but since Switzerland is a nation of mixed ethnicity including Germans, it is another sign, along with the case in Hong Kong versus Mainland Chinese, that there's a much deeper sentiment of us versus them at play, one that even crosses all racial and ethnic lines. It doesn't matter what culture, race, ethnicity, language, whatever an outsider brings, it is the fact that they are viewed as an outsider.

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