A TOP Tory MP has been branded the “pound shop Enoch Powell” after inflammatory comments he made about migrants.

Conservative Party deputy chair Lee Anderson provoked outrage after he said asylum seekers who did not want to be housed on the Bibby Stockholm barge should “f*** off back to France”.

His comments were first reported in the Daily Express on Monday as the first migrants moved onto accommodation on the barge, which is docked at Portland in Dorset.

Concerns have been raised that the barge is unsafe, with the Fire Brigades Union describing it as a potential “deathtrap” because of its narrow corridors and fears it will be overcrowded.

Anderson (below), who has come under fire for insensitivity after claiming families using foodbanks only did so because they did not know how to cook, earned the nickname “30p Lee” when he said family meals could be made for that sum.

The National:

His comments proved the Tories “really are the nasty party”, according to the SNP.

READ MORE: James O'Brien accuses top Tory of 'bigotry' with 'f*** off' asylum seekers comment

Stuart McDonald, the SNP’s justice and immigration spokesperson, said: “The way the Tories have dehumanised desperate people is sickening, and proves they really are the nasty party.

“We owe it to those seeking refuge from unimaginable conditions to provide safe shelter, instead the Tories, now with the support of pro-Brexit Labour, have sought to use human beings as political tools. 

“Scotland can and will have an asylum and immigration system that is both fair and humane, but it’s clear we can only do that with the full powers of independence.”

Scottish Greens MSP Ross Greer added: "Lee Anderson’s vulgar comments are yet another sign that the Tories lack the basic decency to see migrants and refugees as fellow human beings worthy of dignity and kindness.

“Normal, compassionate people will be disgusted by his nasty attack on some of the most vulnerable people on this island.

“The human cost of Westminster’s ‘hostile environment’ for those seeking safety in the UK is terrible and deeply saddening.”

Paul O'Kane, Scottish Labour's social justice and equalities spokesperson, said: "The Tories attitude to immigration could not be any clearer - it is both cruel and completely devoid of any practical solutions.

“The Tories’ last resort after years of failure in government is to turn this issue into a culture war, simply because they have nothing better to offer the British public.

“This childish and compassionless approach will put lives at risk and does nothing to ensure the safety of asylum seekers.

"Unlike the Tories, a Labour Government would put compassion and security at the heart of our immigration system."

Anderson’s comments were defended by Tory Justice Secretary Alex Chalk, who told LBC on Tuesday morning that the MP was expressing the “righteous indignation of the British people” with his incendiary comments.

Alistair Carmichael, the LibDems’ home affairs spokesperson, said: “Alex Chalk's toe-curling interview was yet another sign of how weak this government has become.  

"Lifelong Conservative voters expect decent and respectful political debate, something completely lacking amongst Conservative MPs.

"People in Blue Wall Cheltenham would have been spitting out their cornflakes listening to Alex Chalk this morning.

"This Conservative government has made a complete hash of our asylum system after Priti Patel blocked resources to deal with the record 180,000 backlog in cases. This is a mess of their own making."

Alba’s general secretary Chris McEleny said: “Lee Anderson might fancy himself as King Lear but he’s more like the village fool.

READ MORE: UK Government explores 'potential site' to house refugees on barge in Scotland

“What he doesn’t seem to understand is that, although this rhetoric might get him lots of attention on social media, and appeal to three or four thousand of his constituents, it’s the other ten or so thousand traditional Tory voters he should be worried about, as there’s more chance of them staying at home than there is re-electing him.

“The Labour Party should beware falling for this anti-asylum seeker trap.

“There is indeed a broken, broken system that needs to be fixed but the fix is not to embrace the broken politics of pound shop Enoch Powells”.

The National:

Enoch Powell (above) was a Conservative MP who gained notoriety for his viciously anti-immigration speech in 1968, commonly known as the “Rivers of Blood” speech.  

The UK Labour top team have so far remained silent on the Tory chief’s remarks – though their shadow immigration minister Stephen Kinnock has committed the party to maintaining the use of barges to house asylum seekers for a period of time, if the party form the next Government after the election.