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Home ยป Starmer Praises Thatcher As He Tries To Woo Tory Voters

Starmer Praises Thatcher As He Tries To Woo Tory Voters

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Sir Keir Starmer has launched an impassioned pitch to woo Conservative voters – urging those who feel abandoned by their party “to take a look at Labour again”.

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 voted for in the past.

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 “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 which is likely to incense critics on the left, Sir Keir praised Margaret Thatcher for effecting “meaningful change” in the UK and “setting loose our natural entrepreneurialism” during her 11 years as prime minister.

But he contrasted his approach with the Tories under 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 prime minister 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 have 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.

Watch Sunday Morning With Trevor Phillips from 8.30am on Sky News. Today’s guests include Health Secretary Victoria Atkins, and shadow business secretary Jonathan Reynolds.