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At Conservative Party Convention, Boris Johnson pummels Theresa May’s Brexit plan

The former foreign minister is stroking the idea of a failure of negotiations with the EU while the prime minister still hopes to revive them.

Boris Johnson would be prime minister in place of Theresa May, but he knows that the conservatives meeting in Birmingham are far too loyalist to like the coups, especially in the final sprint of negotiations on Brexit. He probably has enough realism to know that the Conservative members would not support him.

Former Foreign Minister Boris Johnson on October 2nd in Birmingham

In a solemn speech on Tuesday (October 2nd), the former Foreign Minister pounded Mrs. May’s “Checkers Plan” on Brexit, calling it “dangerous and unstable” and saying it does not correspond to “this for which we voted “. But, in his own way, allusive and humorous, he did not explicitly resort to recourse. Making fun of European finance minister Philip Hammond, who predicted that “Boris” would not become prime minister, he said, “This is his only long-term prediction of the truth.”

Mr. Johnson is no longer a minister and has lost the right to speak in the convention gallery. But his intervention, in a 1500-seat room at the Birmingham Conference Center, had been prepared to overshadow the official congress and steal the show from the premier, who is due to close on Wednesday. The troublemaker Boris managed to mobilize his audience, the militants queuing for hours not to miss his speech, but, more serious than usual, he received only polite applause.

“It’s time to regain control”

A few hours before the “speech event” of Mr. Johnson, Theresa May had also fired against announcing a post-Brexit immigration policy reform. By threatening to relegate Europeans to the same status as other foreigners in immigration procedures and by announcing the end of the entry of unskilled foreign workers (often East European), the Prime Minister was frankly slaughtering the “immigration” card. in the negotiations with Brussels.

But in the middle of the Birmingham congress she was also stroking the most radical of the conservative activists, precisely the public of Boris Johnson: for the first time in decades, she proclaimed, the United Kingdom Uni is going to be a country that “controls and chooses those we want to bring here.” Johnson has made a specialty of bias attacks against Theresa May. A few hours before his speech, he was photographed in the press in Bermuda shorts in a field. An allusion to Ms. May’s often mocked remarks that the “most mischievous” thing she did as a child was to annoy peasants by running in a wheat field.

“Support Theresa May as best as we can! “, Johnson said after an intervention that effectively condemned the concessions made by the Prime Minister to the EU, and called on the militants to” throw in the trash “his” plan Checkers “( “Chuck Checkers”). This project, adopted in July by the government, plans to maintain access to the single market for goods, not for services, while restricting the free movement of labor. What the European capitals refuse.

For Boris Johnson, “it is really time to regain control and make the elegant, honorable and grateful exit for which the country voted” and to negotiate a “super-free trade agreement” of the same type as the one signed between the EU and Canada. While May reiterates that there is no alternative to her “Checkers plan”, even though he was rejected by the EU, Mr. Johnson brandishes the prospect of a “no deal” – a failure negotiations that would see the return of customs barriers – as a possible prospect.

“Betrayal” of Brexit

“If we deceive our electorate, and the Checkers plan is a deception, it will only exacerbate the voters’ sense of distrust,” he added, saying that the UK Independence Party ( UKIP, extreme right) and Jeremy Corbyn’s Labor would benefit. For the former minister, the Checkers plan amounts to betraying Brexit and, in this case, “believe me, the people of this country will not forgive you,” he warned. As for the hypothesis of a second referendum, he considers it “disastrous” for public confidence in politics.

By calling on the traditional values ​​of the Tories – individual initiative, free enterprise, weak state intervention – he assured that these principles would make it possible to settle the country’s major problems such as housing and low wages. Without specifically targeting him, he accused Theresa May, not only of calling into question the “opportunities” of Brexit, but of “aping” Jeremy Corbyn by advocating a certain degree of intervention by the state, which defends – without implement – the presence of employees on the boards of directors of companies, and announced a cap on gas and electricity tariffs.

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