The Weekly paper of the New Communist Party of Britain
Week commencing 29th September 2017

Tories preparing to dump May

PRIME MINISTER Theresa May is sinking in a bottomless pit of misery of her own making and it shows on her face. As the Tory party conference approaches, even her closest allies are refusing to support her continued leadership.

Without a secure majority in the House of Commons May has no power to agree deals or to commit Britain or her party to anything. No foreign leaders want to do business with her or with British industry because they know there is no security behind her government.

Most pro-European Union (EU) Tory MPs seem to have resigned themselves to the inevitability of Brexit but Heseltine, who played a big role in unseating Margaret Thatcher, mainly over issues to do with our relationship with the EU, last week told LBC Radio that it is “very possible” that Britain will never leave the EU and that it will one day adopt the Euro, “when the time is right”.

He told LBC host Iain Dale that he believes there will be a significant shift in public opinion and that Parliament could vote down the final withdrawal bill in 2019.

This strengthens speculation that the pro-EU Tories are planning to drag out the Brexit negotiation so long and to make such a botch of them, that the final separation bill will be so awful that no parliament could accept it.

They are aiming for a second referendum that they hope to win. But at the same time, they are still recovering from the shock of the 2016 referendum and the result of last June’s general election, and are fearful of going to the people again.

Chancellor Philip Hammond, one of May’s staunchest supporters until now, last week refused to endorse Theresa May as the Conservative leader that will take the party into the next election.

The Chancellor was repeatedly asked to give his support to May’s plan to stay in post until 2022 but failed to give her his backing.

At the weekend, revelations in a new book claimed that Hammond, Boris Johnson, Brexit Secretary David Davis and Home Secretary Amber Rudd were involved in planning for her departure following her handling of the election campaign.

May’s crucial speech on Brexit in Florence last week pleased no one. She said the negotiation process would take a lot longer than expected and that Britain would not leave for another four years or more, but in the meantime would honour its commitment to pay its billions of pounds of fees to the EU without having any say in EU policies.

This was not enough for the EU’s negotiators, who want the thing sewn up much more quickly and on terms that will discourage any other country that might think of leaving.

And the pro-Brexit supporters in the Tory leadership and elsewhere were outraged that the process would take so long and lose the British economy so much money.

The news that Moody’s Investor Services has downgraded Britain’s credit rating from AA1 to AA2 comes just hours after Theresa May’s lacklustre Florence speech. Britain’s new credit rating is now the worst it has ever been.

The Daily Telegraph (which opposes EU membership) published a letter from Arthur Scargill saying: “Theresa May’s announcement that the Government is prepared to stay in the EU until 2021 is a betrayal on a par with Chamberlain’s sell-out to Hitler and a betrayal of the will of the people.

“Britain is stuck for at least four years with free movement, the customs union, the single market and control by an unelected body in Brussels.

“The British people voted to leave the EU, not to continue paying £10 billion a year, with a trade deficit of £60 billion a year. Mrs May should resign for her act of treachery. The British people will never forgive her.”

But the Tories real problem is that even if they sack May and put someone else in her place, they will suffer the same crippling problem of the lack of a proper majority in Parliament.

May stitched together a deal with the far-right Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) of the occupied six counties of Ireland, but that is just a two-year pact and does not cover all policies. Crucially, they will not support further austerity measures.

The Tories cannot climb out of the hole they are in without resolving their lack of a majority, but if they go for another election Jeremy Corbyn is sure to win it and his support grows stronger everyday.