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Wednesday, July 24, 2024

For the sake of the country, the Tories must ditch Theresa May – before it’s too late

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Theresa May leaving 10 Downing Street with folders in hand
The longer Theresa May clings on, the more likely a Corbyn government becomes

Every day that the Prime Minister remains in office brings us closer to a Corbyn government and a betrayal of Brexit

And so Theresa May has got her deal. But at what cost? To the 17.4 million Britons who voted to leave the EU, I would argue a heavy one. For the plain fact is that the UK remains a member of the EU in all but name. This is a fudge, as anyone who cares to be honest with themselves will acknowledge.

According to the terms as they appear this morning, vast sums of public money will continue to flow from the UK to Brussels. Britain will continue to be in the grip of the European Court of Justice. And no trade deals can be struck yet because of the transition zone in which the UK will be stuck.

This deal in Brussels is good news for Mrs May as we can now move on to the next stage of humiliation. This is not what we voted for.

When the President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker starts to champion the idea of her remaining as Prime Minister, as he did this week, you know something is awry.

After all, Juncker and his EU allies have found it hard to disguise their contempt for the British Conservative Party ever since David Cameron promised to hold the EU referendum. Where once their ire was directed squarely at Ukip, until very recently the Tories had been their Public Enemy number one.

This is because the Tories had the audacity to give the British people a say in how their own lives are run. Brussels has never liked referendums owing to their tendency to produce the “wrong” result. For the EU this means that the exercise needs to be re-run. In their world, there is no such word as “no”. 

In the last few months, beginning with her conciliatory speech in Florence, Remain-supporting Mrs May has increasingly given the EU elite hope. Not only is she prepared to make extraordinary and unnecessary contributions to the EU budget, she was even willing to sell out her partners, the DUP, to satisfy Dublin and Brussels.

Most important of all, she would seemingly be happy for the UK to sign up to a transition deal that would almost certainly last until the next general election, in 2022 – six years after we voted to leave the EU.

The time has come to trigger a leadership election and attempt to find a leader who can put Brexit back on course.”

While Juncker and his friends like these concessions, they also appear to have calculated that if Mrs May can hang on in Downing Street a while longer, the weaker she will be perceived to have become, increasing the likelihood of an early general election.

In such a poll, Juncker and co must hope, a Labour-led coalition would be secured, thereby keeping the UK in the single market and the customs union under the utterly clueless and dangerously vain Jeremy Corbyn.

In the face of this, the Conservative Party is obviously paralysed with fear. In private, many complain that Mrs May is a useless leader without passion or conviction. Yet they are all deeply concerned that a leadership election would not only reopen party divisions to the world, but would also lead to yet another early general election.

Brexit may be important to Tory MPs, but stopping Mr Corbyn becoming the next Prime Minister is even more so.

Theresa May looks glum at a lectern as Juncker stands directly behind her
Jean-Claude Juncker would love to see Mrs May cling on CREDIT: VIRGINIA MAYO/AP

While I can understand that mindset, I would urge the Conservative Party to look beyond the end of its own collective nose. If Tory MPs do not have the courage to face the truth very soon, they will be heading for disaster – and taking those of us who do not buy into the cult of Corbyn and the madness of John McDonnell with them. For the fact is that with every day that Mrs May remains in Downing Street, a Corbyn premiership becomes more likely.

A prime minister needs to be not just in office, but also in charge of our country. For this reason, the time has come to trigger a leadership election and attempt to find a leader who can put Brexit back on course. Until then, the credibility and competence of the Tory party will ebb away rapidly.

If this doesn’t happen, I worry that not only will the true Brexit for which 17.4 million voted be lost, but a door to hardline socialism in Britain will be opened.

It is time for Tory MPs to take the risk they know in their hearts they must. Until they do, Britain will be left with a Prime Minister who guarantees us nothing more than EU domination. In the name of God, go!

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