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Half Of Australia Supports Banning Muslim Immigration, According To New Poll

The respected pollster ran the poll twice to confirm the results.

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A new poll has found almost 50% of Australians would support Pauline Hanson's call for a ban on Muslim immigration, with many suggesting Muslims "do not integrate into Australian society".

Lukas Coch / AAPIMAGE

The polling was conducted by Essential Research in the wake of One Nation leader Pauline Hanson's speech to the parliament last week.

When those respondents were asked why, more than 40% suggested it was because they fear that Muslims don't "integrate" into Australian society and 27% suggested it was because Muslims represented a "terrorist threat".

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Executive director of EMC research Peter Lewis told BuzzFeed News he was surprised by the results, so ran the poll again.

"I thought it would be more than the actual Hanson vote, but the actual level of support surprised me," said Lewis.

"I was worried it was what we call a ‘rogue poll'... so we repeated and got the exact same result."

Essential's research polls are sent out to around 8,000 people online every week, with respondents given "points" as incentives to complete the poll.

The company's poll before the 2016 election, was within 0.1% of the final two-party preferred result.

It prompted Labor's Tim Watts to suggest Hanson's "xenophobia" could lead Australia to cut itself off from its largest neighbour, Muslim-democracy Indonesia.

What kind of response would you get if you asked about a ban on immigration from Indonesia? https://t.co/KCy0UjzdJq

Imagine if Hanson's xenophobia caused us to cut ourselves off from China in the 90s? Now she wants to make the same mistake with Indonesia?

Imagine how much this would cost us in lost economic growth and reduced strategic security alone - national self-sabotage writ large.

Hanson and her three One Nation senators are the only Australian politicians to echo US presidential candidate Donald Trump's call for a Muslim ban.

But within the government, Queensland MP George Christensen has suggested Australia should ban immigration from Middle Eastern countries which have suffered from Islamic extremism.

On Wednesday, Christensen said the poll results "reflect community concerns over the threat of radical Islam" but Australia should not ban Muslim immigration.

"While I don't agree with banning Muslims from migrating to Australia, I think it would be a sound policy to ban immigration from certain countries where radical Islam is present and there is a high degree of violent extremism."

Mark Di Stefano is a political editor for BuzzFeed News and is based in Sydney.

Contact Mark Di Stefano at mark.distefano@buzzfeed.com.

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