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Boris Johnson promises 50,000 more nurses as he launches Tory election manifesto

3 min read

The NHS will have 50,000 more nurses if the Conservatives win the general election, Boris Johnson has claimed.

The Prime Minister said the party would introduce an annual maintenance grant worth up to £8,000 a year to get enough students trained up to meet the target.

Mr Johnson made the announcement as he published the Tories' general election manifesto, which also included a promise not to increase income tax, VAT or National Insurance contributions.

He said the 59-page document, called 'Get Brexit Done, Unleash Britain's Potential', was "the route map that will take us forward" as he warned voters of a "Corbyn/Sturgeon coalition coallition of chaos" if he is booted out of Downing Street.

Other promises included in a manifesto notably light on detail are the creation of 50 million GP appointments, 20,000 more police officers, an Australian-style points-based immigration system and £1bn more for childcare.

The manifesto also promises to maintain benefits for the elderly such as the pensions triple lock and the winter fuel payment, spend £2bn filling potholes on England's roads, scrap hospital car parking charges and reduce the UK's carbon emissions to net vero by 2050.

As every member of his Cabinet looked on, the Prime Minister said: "This is a very very important election, it is going to be a very very close-fought election and we must contest every seat and campaign for every vote and make our case respectfully and humbly to every elector.

"What we want to do is very very simple: we want to honour the democratic processes of this country. We want to do this because it is right in itself but also because it is right for our country and for our economy now, because we want to focus on the priorities of the British people - above all the NHS and the cost of living.

"We want to get Brexit done and unleash the potential of this whole country."

Overall, the Conservatives pledge to spend an extra £10bn on day-to-day spending over the next five years, compared to Labour's plans for £83bn of increased expenditure.

Mr Johnson said he would lead a "sensible, moderate, tax-cutting, one nation Conservative government" as he accused Jeremy Corbyn and John McDonnell of threatening to collapse the UK economy.

He said: "Corbynomics - McDonnellomics - means higher taxes for everybody in this country."

On Brexit, Mr Johnson said he would take the UK out of the EU by the end of January, and insisted that a trade deal could be struck with the bloc before the transition period ends on 31 December next year.

He said: "Do we want more deal, do we want more dither and drift and deadlock and division, do we want 2020 to be another year of defeatism and despair?

"No we don't, because we want to move forward and this country has an incredible future."

The PM added: "We will get Brexit done and we will end the acrominoy and the chaos, whereas [Labour] want to rip up our deal and negotiate a new one."

Mocking the Labour leader, he added: "I say let's go carbon neutral by 2050 and Corbyn neutral by Christmas."

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