Keir Starmer: 'This is the guy who wanted a second referendum'
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Jonathan Gullis, MP for Stoke-on-Trent North, slammed Sir Keir Starmer as he accused him of “suddenly finding his patriotism” in a new year speech he gave on Tuesday, as he claimed the Labour leaders Brexit position was evidence to the contrary.
Speaking from Birmingham, the Labour leader put patriotism at the centre of his speech as he delivered a raft of pledges to the British people in front of two Union Jack flags.
During the speech he insisited Labour was a “deeply patriotic party” whose former Prime Ministers had brought in changes “rooted in the everyday concerns of working people”.
He noted how he was eager to make changes in Britian if Labour were to take charge, including tackling weal rising cost of living, tax, soaring crime and GP wait times, “precisely because we are patriotic”.
But speaking to GB News on Tuesday, Mr Gullis was not convinced as he set about a heavy critique of Sir Keir’s promises.
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He told the anchor Darren McAffrey: “Captain hindsight and his little gimmick!
“Let’s not forget this is the guy who wanted a second referendum, who wanted to drag us back into the EU! Who suddenly has now found his patriotism!”
Mr Gullis said Sir Keir should “have a look in the mirror” at “the fact he even needs to explain he is a patriot”.
The member for Stoke-on-Trent North also noted how party leaders “shouldn’t have to explain why you believe and love your country”.
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He suggested patriotism “should just be automatically there” as he further picked apart the Labour leaders’ speech.
In the speech, Sir Keir said: “The Britain I want is a country in which those who contribute get something back. Because 2022 is also the first year in which we need to tackle some big challenges: repairing after the pandemic; combating the climate crisis.
The Labour leader added how 2022 will also be the year for “making Brexit work” as he appeared to address concerns over his Brexit beliefs.
He went on, adding: “I believe that the best still lies ahead for this country. But only if we have the courage to create a new Britain. A country in which you and your family get the security, prosperity and respect you deserve.”
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Labour’s new patriotic strategy was further emphasised when Sir Keir appeared to celebrate Britain and “all that the British have to be proud of”.
The speech is being seen as an attempt to attract old voters back to the party following the exodus of its heartland supporters under Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership.
It is also as an opportunity for Sir Keir to lay out what Labour have to offer, amid confusion amongst the public about what the party stands for.
The speech also comes amid a multitude of crises and plummeting polling ratings for Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Conservative Government who are battling sleaze allegations and investigations into multiple COVID-19 rule breaking parties.
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