It’s been over two weeks since federal immigration minister Marc Miller revealed the Liberals’ new mass immigration targets, and Conservative leader Pierre Poilievre still hasn’t offered up his own potential figures to Canadians.

As announced earlier this month, the Trudeau government will be accepting 485,000 permanent residents in 2024, 500,000 in 2025, and another 500,000 in 2026. 

But don’t be misled: Canada also admits hundreds of thousands of non-permanent residents every year, such as temporary foreign workers and international students, so our population actually grew by 1.05 million in 2022 even though we have a below-replacement fertility rate of 1.40 births per Canadian woman.

True North asked Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre’s office for his reaction to the 2024-2026 figures.

His spokesperson responded by pointing to something Poilievre said in a previous radio interview.

“Justin Trudeau has totally delinked the numbers from available housing, healthcare, and jobs. When I’m prime minister, I will bring in a common sense formula that links the number of immigrants to the number of homes, jobs and healthcare services that are available,” Poilievre had said.

When asked if the formula could theoretically lead to a reduction from current immigration targets, Poilievre’s office didn’t respond.

From the way Poilievre’s statement is worded, it sounds like he may prefer to scale up homebuilding and healthcare worker hiring to keep up Trudeau’s immigration levels (or perhaps even increase them). Since we haven’t been afforded an answer, we can only speculate. 

According to a poll commissioned by Bloomberg News, 68% of Canadians believe Trudeau’s immigration targets negatively impact the housing market, but it seems that the party now  leading in the polls – the Conservatives – aren’t eager to talk about immigration targets.

“Conservatism has gone off the rails in both Canada and the UK on very important key issues,” Bill Tufts, author of Pension Ponzi and founder of Fair Pensions for All, told True North.

“I hear from my conservative friends that Pierre can’t discuss issues like immigration because he would lose votes, and once the election comes he will change things dramatically.”

“The Conservatives in the UK made these promises and then failed miserably. In Canada, those promises are not even being made, ones that are important to the survival of our country.”

Last week, UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak fired Home Secretary Suella Braverman after she wrote an op-ed calling out the double standard in how pro-Palestine demonstrations are treated by police because they are “politically-connected minority groups who are favoured by the left.”

In an open letter after her firing, Braverman stated Sunak had “manifestly and repeatedly failed” on key policy priorities such as reducing legal immigration and reforming human rights legislation to “stop the boats” and deport asylum-seekers. 

As of 2021, nearly one-quarter of the Canadian population is or has been a landed immigrant or permanent resident – the largest proportion since Confederation, and the highest among G7 nations. (This does not include the hundreds of thousands or millions of temporary residents also living in Canada)

Statistics Canada projects that with current immigration levels, immigrants will make up about one-third of the population in less than 20 years. 


  • Lindsay Shepherd

    Lindsay holds an M.A. in Cultural Analysis and Social Theory from Wilfrid Laurier University. She has been published in The Post Millennial, Maclean’s, National Post, Ottawa Citizen, and Quillette.