‘I’ll take on whoever leads the Conservatives’ – Starmer

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Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer has said he will take on whoever leads the Conservative Party as he readied his shadow cabinet for an election in May 2023.

In an interview with The Independent, Sir Keir said there was “no plan for the future” under the Tories.

He told the newspaper: “I don’t care who they put up… we will take on whoever is the Tory leader.

Keir Starmer visits Northumberland
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer (Owen Humphreys/PA)

“Whoever the leader is, whether it’s (Boris) Johnson or his successor… it is clear that we’ve already had 11, going on 12, years of Tory government, and it’s been a complete failure on any terms.”

Sir Keir told The Independent that Labour would build a “new Britain” and that he had moved the party away from the Jeremy Corbyn era.

He said he had told his top team to prepare to fight an election as early as May 2023.

He said: “We also have to show we’re a government in waiting.

“I think already people are beginning to see that.

“We have better answers, clearer answers, and more confidence than the Government going forward.”

He added Mr Johnson was now “being seen for what he is, which is a leader who over-promises and under-delivers; a leader without a real plan for government or strategy for government; an unserious leader rather than a serious leader”.

Sir Keir said he would force Mr Johnson to resign right now if he could, but said that was an issue for the Tories to decide.

He said: “They’re in the middle of absolute infighting in their party, as he hides from public scrutiny and those around him circle to see whether they can be his successor.

“In the middle of the pandemic that is the worst of all situations, because here we are with the variant on the increase, and people really concerned about what’s going to happen … and we’ve got a Prime Minister who is so weak and his party so divided.”

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