The Scottish Mail on Sunday
For sake of Brexit, May must remain
‘Voters left May in charge with her new mandate’
YES, Conservatives are frustrated by our Election campaign, but common sense will prevail. Only a tiny number of MPs are agitating against Theresa May. They should stop feeding the headlines, or they will start to feel the wrath of the rest of the Conservative Party.
Theresa will continue as Prime Minister, because she can and she must. And Jeremy Corbyn’s suggestion that he should form a minority administration underlines both the fantasy of his leadership, and the potential disaster for the nation.
Our situation today is very different from when Gordon Brown lost the 2010 Election and tried to hang on. Then he had only 258 seats and 29 per cent of the vote; today, we have 318 seats and are the largest party with the most votes – a creditable 42 per cent. In 2005, Tony Blair got barely 35 per cent, but nobody suggested he lacked the moral authority to govern.
Mr Corbyn did fight a better campaign. He offered hope. He inspired the young. We Conservatives must change our attitude, and offer real and affordable hope. Hope for the end to austerity and for better pay for public-sector workers.
Hope too for younger people, who have high ideals and feel oppressed by high taxes, student debt and high property prices. Theresa May believes we must tackle these challenges, and promote equality and opportunity for all across society – for the many, not the few. We must do this, but without making promises that the nation cannot afford.
Make no bones about it; Conservatives are disappointed, but the voters left Theresa May in charge, and with her new mandate. That includes Brexit, strengthening the Union of the United Kingdom, and continuing to restore prosperity and jobs.
Both Labour and the Conservatives stood on Brexit manifestos. Labour made no commitment to remain ‘in’ the single market or the customs union. They also voted for Article 50 before the election. The proRemain parties received a total of 11 per cent of the vote: so no Lib Dem second EU referendum. Even the pro-EU SNP has been forced into retreat, killing off any idea of a second Scottish independence referendum.
It is wishful thinking by Remainers who believe this result gives them a mandate to derail Brexit – along with the DUP, Mrs May will command a Commons majority for her manifesto plans to leave the EU. If the UK were to remain subject to the EU courts, or not take back legal control over our laws and who comes into the country, or continue making huge payments into the EU budget, that would betray the majority who voted Leave last year. It would have an incendiary effect on British politics.
We also have a duty to protect the UK from Mr Corbyn’s crazy hard-Left policies, which would have crashed the economy. The country would never thank us, or Theresa May, if she just threw in the towel. She has already proved tougher than that.