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Sir Keir Starmer praises Margaret Thatcher in pitch to woo Tory voters – telling them: ‘Take a look at Labour again’ | Politics News


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Sir Keir Starmer has praised former Tory prime minister Margaret Thatcher in a bid to woo Conservative voters as he urged them “to take a look at Labour again” ahead of the next general election.

In a comment piece for The Sunday Telegraph, the Labour leader said he is extending a hand of friendship to all Britons – irrespective of who they have supported in the past at the ballot box.

Sir Keir wrote: “Across Britain there are people who feel disillusioned, frustrated, angry, worried. Many of them have always voted Conservative but feel that their party has left them. I understand that.

“I saw that with my own party and acted to fix it. But I also understand that many will still be uncertain about Labour. I ask them to take a look at us again.”

He went on to argue that “Labour has changed dramatically” since Jeremy Corbyn’s time as leader – and claimed his party had undergone “shock therapy” to ensure it was “rooted in the priorities, the concerns and the dreams of ordinary British people”.

In a move that is likely to incense critics on the left, Sir Keir praised the late Baroness Thatcher for effecting “meaningful change” in the UK as she “sought to drag Britain out of its stupor by setting loose our natural entrepreneurialism” during her 11 years in Downing Street.

Britain’s first female prime minister remains a deeply divisive figure in UK politics, from the Falklands War and the bitter year-long miners’ strike to privatisation and the poll tax, which ultimately led to her downfall.

Sir Keir contrasted his approach with the Tories under Prime Minister Rishi Sunak – claiming that the government has been drifting away from the electorate after “years of sowing empty promises, cynical falsehoods and false dawns”.

Adam Boulton analysis: Why Sunak is getting uptight about Starmer

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‘We’ll have to check the tape’

The opposition leader claimed the current state of Britain is cause to throw hands up in despair, and the country no longer works for those it is supposed to.

“Families across the country are bombarded with daily reminders of our current malaise: crumbling public services that no longer serve the public, families weighed down by the anxiety of spiralling mortgage bills and food prices, neighbourhoods plagued by crime and anti-social behaviour,” he wrote.

Mr Sunak was once again criticised for failing to get a grip on immigration, with Sir Keir accusing the PM of “a betrayal” after net migration rose – despite repeated Conservative promises that this figure would fall.

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Sunak: Migration level ‘too high’

Sir Keir also lambasted the “nonsensical” idea that some topics are “off limits” for Labour – vowing to “smash the criminal gangs growing fat on the misery of human trafficking”.

He wrote: “I profoundly disagree with the idea Labour should not be talking about immigration or small boats crossings. These are matters of serious public concern and deserve to be treated as such.”

The latest figures suggest Labour has a 20-point lead over the Tories in the polls, with the opposition telling supporters that “all signals” are pointing to an election in May.

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Written by: radioroxi

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