Boris Johnson on sending ‘corduroy communist cosmonaut into orbit’
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The Prime Minister set out his ambitions for the “change that people voted for” in the Brexit referendum. He outlined his vision to level up the country and improve standards across the UK to ensure some areas were not “geographically fated to be poorer than others”.
Mr Johnson said: “That’s the direction in which the country is going now – towards a high-wage, high-skilled, high-productivity and, yes, thereby a low-tax economy.
“That is what the people of this country need and deserve.
“Yes, it will take time, and sometimes it will be difficult, but that is the change that people voted for in 2016.”
The conference is the first time Boris Johnson has been able to address the party faithful since his historic 2019 election win and the UK left the EU.
Tory MPs have been buoyed by the chance to properly celebrate their 80 seat Commons majority.
While the country has been grappling with the cost of living crisis and petrol shortages, there has been a jubilant atmosphere in Manchester.
Even MPs’ frustrations over manifesto promise-breaking tax rises have been largely ignored at the conference.
“We just don’t want to do anything that damages the boss,” one backbencher told Express.co.uk.
Another added: “The atmosphere has been great. Everyone is just really excited to be back and without masks.”
Northern Ireland secretary Brandon Lewis said there had been “a real buzz” about the week-long meet.
With slogans of “build back better” and “getting on with the job” the party has used the conference to pledge to now deliver on its manifesto commitment of levelling up the country now the pandemic is drawing to a close.
There have also been plenty of reflecting on the Government’s success in keeping the economy afloat over the course of the last 18 months and the rollout of the Covid vaccine.
In his speech Mr Johnson also paid tribute to the NHS and said a “tide of anxiety” is washing into A&E departments and GP practices after the Covid crisis led to record waiting lists for operations.
Defending his decision to raise taxes head-on, he said: We have a huge hole in the public finances, we spent £407billion on Covid support and our debt now stands at over £2 trillion, and waiting lists will almost certainly go up before they come down.
“Covid pushed out the great bow wave of cases and people did not or could not seek help, and that wave is now coming back – a tide of anxiety washing into every A&E and every GP.
“Your hip replacement, your mother’s surgery and this is the priority of the British people.”
More to follow…
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