Finance

Theresa May sways to 'Dancing Queen' to deliver upbeat Brexit message

Theresa May sways to 'Dancing Queen' to deliver upbeat Brexit message

The British prime minister poked fun at her Maybot image as she got her groove on to Abba's Dancing Queen - mocking her dance moves from a recent trip to Africa - before appealing to the party to get behind her.

On the eve of her speech, Boris Johnson infuriated the prime minister with a cultivated media scrum and then delighting his supporters with a speech in which he set out his personal Tory leadership manifesto and savaged her Chequers plan.

May's speech was a direct riposte to Johnson, who told an audience Tuesday that May's proposal for close post-divorce economic ties with the European Union was an "outrage" that would leave Britain unable to strike new trade deals around the world.

"I write this with heavy heart; however, we now need a proper leadership".

In Mr Duddridge's letter, he stated he had "not met a single MP who thinks she will lead us into another election after the last disastrous snap election".

PRIME MINISTER THERESA MAY: What we are proposing is very challenging for the EU. "But if we stick together and hold our nerve I know we can get a deal that delivers for Britain".

And in another rallying cry for unity, she repeatedly attacked the main opposition Labour Party, saying their policies, including a renationalisation of mail, rail and utilities, would mean increased taxes and business flight.

Millions of people who have never supported our party in the past are appalled by what Jeremy Corbyn has done to Labour, she will say.

"It is an absolute necessity, if we're not going to keep increasing spending in line with demand, to have a plan setting out how to run services differently in order to make them fundamentally cheaper to run", she said.

Journalists, analysts, politicians and others have reacted to the speech, and Mrs May's awkward dancing as she was announced at the conference in Birmingham.

With just six months until Brexit is scheduled to take at least partial effect, May is under pressure after the European Union rejected parts of her Brexit plan and critics in her party call for a change of strategy.

The challenges that May is facingdid little to dampen the gusto of her speech to conservatives Wednesday.

"I myself was party leader for 15 years and I know the rules of partisan politics", said Thursday, Mr Tusk, after a meeting with the irish Prime minister, Leo Varadkar, in Brussels.

Appealing to voters tired of belt-tightening, she said: "Because you made sacrifices, there are better days ahead. May also name-checked The Bodyguard, admitting she's been too busy with Brexit to watch it: '[Politics is] not always glamorous, I've seen the trailers for the bodyguard and let me tell you, it wasn't like that in my day".

"It is no surprise that we have had a range of different views expressed this week", she said.

May appeared intent on stealing Johnson's spotlight, scheduling a flurry of morning interviews at which she unveiled a new immigration policy a day ahead of schedule.

Johnson said if the right deal with Brussels was agreed it could be win-win for both sides of the Channel.

Yet May contradicted herself at points, lambasting Labour for allowing government borrowing to spiral out of control during their time in government before announcing she would be abolishing house-building borrowing caps for local authorities just moments later.

May meanwhile has said the EU must compromise and move its position - which would keep Northern Ireland inside the EU's customs union while the rest of the United Kingdom leaves - as this would create a border between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK.

"So this is our proposal".

With just six months before Britain is due to exit the European Union, she has so far weathered the Brexit storm, shrugging off a barnstorming speech by her ex-foreign minister Boris Johnson that did little to hide his leadership ambitions. No taking Britain back to square one.


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