Theresa May accuses Jeremy Corbyn of abandoning 'patriotic working class'

Posted On: 
12th May 2017

Theresa May will today make her most personal attack on Jeremy Corbyn to date, accusing him of having “deserted” traditional Labour voters. 

Theresa May at the Conservative party conference
PA Images

The Prime Minister will claim Mr Corbyn does not stand up for “proud and patriotic working class people” as she sets out plans to “reach out” into areas previously dominated by Labour.

On a visit to the north-east – the region where the Conservatives surprisingly won the Tees Valley mayoral contest last week – Mrs May will make a plea for those who have supported Labour in the past to back the Tories.  

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“So far during this campaign, we have learned one thing about Jeremy Corbyn: proud and patriotic working class people in towns and cities across Britain have not deserted the Labour party – Jeremy Corbyn has deserted them,” she will say.

“Millions of people here in the north east of England, and across our country, have loyally given the Labour party their allegiance for generations. I respect that.

“We respect that parents and grandparents taught their children and grandchildren that Labour was a party that shared their values and stood up for their community.

“But across the country today, traditional Labour supporters are increasingly looking at what Jeremy Corbyn believes in and are appalled.”

The Conservative leader will also attack Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell, saying he “can’t be trusted”, and Shadow Home Secretary Diane Abbott, whom she says “can’t add up” after her failure to spell out how much Labour’s manifesto plan to increase police numbers would cost.

“I will fight to win every vote and strive to earn the trust of all our people, because everyone in our country counts and everyone has a stake in building a better future in the months and years ahead,” she will add.

“I will be reaching out to all those who have been abandoned by Labour and let down by government for too long.

“I will be doing everything I can to earn their trust. My commitment to them is this: If you put your trust in me, back me, I will work every day to build a better future for your family and our country. If you put your trust in me, back me, I will strive to be a leader worthy of our great country.”