Keir Starmer praises divisive ex-PM Margaret Thatcher in pitch to Tory voters

Keir Starmer has praised Margaret Thatcher for bringing in “meaningful change” in a direct pitch to Conservative voters.

In feedback that danger enraging components of his get together, the Labour chief hailed the divisive former Tory Prime Minister for “setting loose our natural entrepreneurialism” in an article for the Sunday Telegraph. He additionally pointed to previous Labour PMs Sir Tony Blair and Clement Atlee for understanding politicians “must act in service of the British people, rather than dictating to them”.

As Rishi Sunak’s get together continues to languish within the polls, Mr Starmer spoke on to disaffected Conservatives, saying Labour would “extend the hand of friendship to you, no matter where you are or who you have voted for in the past”.

Keir Starmer praised Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher for 'setting loose our natural entrepreneurialism'
Keir Starmer praised Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher for ‘setting free our pure entrepreneurialism’
Corbis by way of Getty Images)

He stated: “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 noticed that with my very own get together and acted to repair it. But I additionally perceive that many will nonetheless be unsure about Labour. I ask them to try us once more.”

His comments about Mrs Thatcher are likely to stoke anger on the Labour left following her policies of mass privatisation and brutal crackdown on trade unions in the 1980s.

The Labour leader sought to park his tanks on Mr Sunak’s lawn by criticising the Conservatives’ handling of Brexit and immigration. Amid fury on the Tory right over record net migration figures, he accused the Government of a “betrayal” of its manifesto promise to curb legal immigration.

Mr Sunak is scrambling to revive his flagship Rwanda deportation scheme after the Supreme Court ruled the plan unlawful last month. The PM is reportedly planning to hand at least £15million to the African country as part of a new treaty, as he tries to make the plan lawful.

More than £140million has already been given to Rwanda, despite no planes taking off carrying asylum seekers since the plan was announced last year. Home Secretary James Cleverly could fly out to Kigali to ratify a new treaty as soon as Monday, with emergency legislation also potentially to be tabled this week, according to The Sunday Times.

Small boat crossings are set to be the second highest on record this year, after 93 more people made the perilous Channel crossing on Friday. Last year was the highest on record, with some 45,755 people making the crossing. But despite Rishi Sunak’s promise to ‘stop the boats’ , this year’s figure is just 73 away from the second highest ever – 2021’s total of 28,526.

Mr Starmer said it was “nonsensical” that discussing immigration was off limits for Labour and vowed to”smash the legal gangs rising fats on the distress of human trafficking”. He wrote: “I profoundly disagree with the concept Labour shouldn’t be speaking about immigration or small boats crossings. These are issues of significant public concern and should be handled as such.”

Health Secretary Victoria Atkins was unable to say whether the emergency legislation promise weeks ago by the PM would be ready before Christmas.

She told Sky News’s Trevor Phillips: “We are very a lot working throughout Government on this. It will take somewhat little bit of time to attract up this laws as a result of we wish to make certain it’s in the proper type.” Asked whether it would be ready before Christmas, she replied: “I do know the Home Secretary is working extremely exhausting and shortly on this.”