Speeches recovered from the Conservative party’s online archive More…

Hague: We're ready to govern for all the people

Speech to the Conservative Party Conference 2000 by the Rt Hon William Hague MP, Conservative Party Leader.

"This has been the best, the most upbeat and the most successful Conservative Conference in years.

This week the people of Britain look to us to see if we are ready to be a Government.

And with the policies we have presented and the purpose we have demonstrated, we have shown beyond doubt that we are ready for Government.

This week the people of Britain look to us to see if we have the right team to run the country.

And with brilliant platform speeches we have shown beyond doubt that this Shadow Cabinet, with its breadth of vision and its depth of talent, is the best team for Britain.

The breadth of vision to help hard working families; and depth of talent too. Didn't Michael Portillo make a fantastic speech and show what a brilliant Chancellor of the Exchequer he'll be?

The breadth of vision to preserve our independence in a flexible Europe; and the depth of talent. After years of Robin Cook wouldn't it be great to have a real Foreign Secretary like Francis Maude?

The breadth of vision to rejuvenate our inner cities, set our schools free, help our pensioners and improve the NHS; and the depth of talent with people like Michael Ancram, Archie Norman, Theresa May, David Willetts and Dr Liam Fox ready to take up the challenge of government.

The breadth of vision to win the war against crime; and the depth of talent that would give us a great crime-fighting Home Secretary in Ann Widdecombe.

Our Conference has looked like a Conference for the future. Labour's looked like a Conference from the past.

After all the years of trying to control the trade unions, it was back to beer and sandwiches in Brighton last week. Tony Blair likes beer and sandwiches without the beer. I like it without the sandwiches. Come to think of it, I like it without the unions.

And throughout this week, we have shown the British people beyond doubt that we can win the next general election.

Thanks to the Deputy Prime Minister we now know when that election is planned to be. Last week that political titan was asked a trick question: has Labour's disastrous performance changed your plans for an election in six month's time? John Prescott innocently replied: 'no it hasn't'.

But even without John Prescott helping us out, we're ready for that election whenever Tony Blair now dares to call it. We're ready for it next autumn, we're ready for it next May, we're ready for it now. Go on Tony, call it now.

We all remember the armchair critics who told us after the last election that we could not recover. Don't even bother they said, for we have entered a new world in which Tony Blair can do no wrong and New Labour will rule forever.

But New Labour was not a philosophy, it was a fashion. And nothing is more unfashionable than a fashion that's out of fashion.

We saw them last week, divided, arrogant and out of touch. What a bunch they are - this soap opera of a government.

In last week's episode of the Neighbours from Hell: Robin has fallen out with Peter. Peter won't talk to Geoffrey any more. Geoffrey won't lend his holiday home to Tony. Mo has been sent to Coventry. Clare doesn't like the tent run by Tony's crony. Tony's crony blames Chris and Peter. Tony rows with Gordon. Peter won't speak to Gordon. And Gordon won't speak to anyone at all.

Last week in Brighton the security was so tight it was Wednesday before they stabbed each other in the back.

No Ministers in recent times have lost touch so rapidly with the people who elected them.

When an angry pensioner sent a cheque for 75p to Gordon Brown, he cashed it.

When Baroness Jay was asked if she understood the desperate crisis in farming, she said she knew all about it because she "had a little cottage in the country".

Cocooned in Whitehall they have retreated into a world where they never have to make do with a failing school, or witness a crime, or pay for a tank of petrol.

It is fundamental to their decline that they have betrayed and forgotten the real people of this country. And it is fundamental to our recovery that we have become the champions of the common sense instincts of the people of our country.

And it is you, the people of this country, who do wait for hospital treatment, and do see crime on your street, and do pay for your tank of petrol, that I have in my mind as we fight the next election - It's you that I'm in it for.

For all the people who can't afford to pay more in tax to a Government that squanders their money - I'm in it for you.

For all the people who want classrooms where teachers can apply reasonable discipline to children without fear of ending up in court - I'm in it for you.

For all the people who despair at the neglect and poverty and waste of human talent in our inner cities and want to do something about it - I'm in it for you.

For all the people who think it's a scandal when a patient's throat cancer operation is cancelled four times because of political targets - I'm in it for you.

For all the people who think that the law should be on the side of the house-owner and not the house-breaker - I'm in it for you.

For all the people who can see that our asylum system is in chaos and want political leaders with the courage to get up and say so - I'm in it for you.

For all the people who believe that we shouldn't be handing over more of the rights and powers of this country - I'm in it for you.

For all the people who want to keep the Pound - I'm in it for you.

For all the people who are sick of the spin and the waste and the lies and the cronies and the sycophants, sick of the arrogance and the high-handedness, sick of the contempt for our traditions and for our Parliament, sick of a Chancellor too out of touch to listen and of a Prime Minister too arrogant to apologise, for all those people - we are all in it for you.

For all the people who really hoped that they had elected a Government that would deliver on its promises and have been so bitterly disappointed - we are in it for you.

These are people who look to us to give them back their country. And we will not let them down.

When Tony Blair declared war on the forces of Conservatism, he declared war on all these people.

Last year, in his Conference speech, he said defeating the forces of Conservatism was his great mission for the twenty first century. Last week, nine months into the twenty first century, he didn't mention the forces of Conservatism at all.

We really do have a Prime Minister who is prepared to say whatever will please his audience without the slightest consistent thought or principle entering his head.

But just because he's stopped talking about the forces of Conservatism, it hasn't made us go away. Just because he's paranoid about the forces of Conservatism doesn't mean we're not out to get him.

Because what will bring this Government down is its arrogant contempt for the views of real people.

You know the precise moment when everyone started to see through New Labour? Midnight. December 31st last year. You probably all had a good time on New Year's Eve. Ffion and I, we went to the Dome.

What did Tony Blair tell us about the Dome? 'I'm absolutely sure that this is going to be a startling and exhilarating success … it will be the most famous new building in the world in the year 2000'. Well he wasn't wrong about that.

And then there was John Prescott: 'if we can't make the Dome work, we're not much of a Government'. Whatever would we do without him?

Tony Blair told us that the Dome would be 'the first paragraph of Labour's next Election Manifesto'. What a good idea.

In fact such a good idea that I thought I'd help him out by drafting it for him: 'Our New Labour Government, by wasting vast sums of money on something shiny and glitzy on the outside, empty and meaningless on the inside, with no understanding of our history, no vision of our future, and with so much hype followed by complete and utter failure, have successfully built the perfect monument to the way we have governed Britain for the last four years'.

There it is, the Dome: the first paragraph of their Manifesto and the last word about their Government.

For the real lesson is even more serious than the failure of the Dome. It is that the Prime Minister who now admits that Governments can't run visitor attractions still thinks that Governments know best how to interfere in every classroom, manage every hospital ward, regulate every business and spend everyone's money.

You've seen how New Labour said the Dome was going to be a success, and poured your money into it, put their cronies in charge, denied there was a problem, and how at the end it was the people of this country who had to pick up the bill.

That is New Labour. That's what they're doing to our schools. That's what they're doing to our hospitals. That's what they're doing to our police force.

With the Dome it's taken nine months to see that these interfering busy bodies didn't know what they were doing. Don't give them five more years to prove that they don't know what they're doing with our schools and our hospitals and our police.

Peter Mandelson said recently: something's gone seriously wrong with this Labour Government, but what is it?

Shall we tell him?

Tax is rising faster than anywhere in the developed world. Hospital waiting lists are up 87,000. Secondary school class sizes are bigger. Welfare bills are soaring. Crime is rising after years of falling. The transport system is at a standstill. Petrol taxes are the highest in Europe. Red tape is prolific. Waste is endemic. The bureaucracy is bloated. Political correctness is rampant. The countryside is in crisis. The cities are neglected. Our independence as a nation is being given away and the Prime Minister is spending millions of pounds trying to con us all into abolishing the Pound when we all want to keep it.

That's what's wrong with this Government.

Three years ago at this Conference I made a prediction. I said: 'New Labour have certainly changed politics for the time being. Their politics without conscience brought fascination to begin with. Then admiration. But next it will bring disillusion. Finally it will bring contempt'.

We remember the fascination. We endured the admiration. We have seen the disillusion and now, like millions of our fellow citizens, we feel the contempt.

In his speech last week, Tony Blair announced again: 'I will act'. Well, of course he will. It's all been an act. It's only ever been an act. He's the biggest actor in town.

But no amount of acting can save him from the truth spelt out in one of those famous Downing Street memos: 'TB' - a clever disguise - 'is not believed to be real. He lacks conviction, he is all spin and presentation, he just says things to please people, not because he believes them.'

TB spent thousands of pounds getting that advice. WH could have told him it for nothing.

The only person in the country still stuck in the fascination stage with New Labour is the Leader of the Liberals. But of course we've witnessed the four stages of the Liberal Party too. Irrelevance, irrelevance, irrelevance, and irrelevance.

So people now look to us. They've seen through the Labour Party and its Leader. Millions are coming to know that not only has Labour failed to deliver, but that they are never going to deliver.

This week, and in the coming weeks, people want to know what the alternative will be. They look to us. They want to know if we're ready. They want to know what drives us, what motivates us, what we would be like in office. They want to know where we come from and where we're going to.

And they want to know what motivates me.

Come with me to the Rother Valley, to the heart of South Yorkshire. See Rotherham, the industrial town I was born in. Visit Wath Comprehensive, the school that gave me a chance in life.

Come and meet the people I grew up with. Children of proud mothers who struggled with small budgets, who relied on the local health service, and who hoped for a better life for their sons and their daughters. Children of fathers who worked hard in mines and on farms and in steel works, who never knew the security of owning a home or saving for a pension, who had no choice but to live from one week's pay packet to the next.

Those children I grew up with have families of their own now. Many are better off than their parents. They own their own home and they're saving for a pension. Their jobs are in supermarkets, in high street banks, in telephone call centres; they're nurses and teachers and self-employed builders. And the girls in my class are now juggling with all the competing pressures of being good mothers and holding down a good job.

But these people, the children I grew up with in South Yorkshire, want the same things as their parents did. They want security and stability for themselves and their families. They want a better life for their own children.

Don't think that because they holiday in Tenerife and not Tuscany that they don't have aspirations for a better life.

Don't think that because they've moved to Ilkley and not Islington that their voice can be ignored.

The people I grew up with, and millions like them, are the mainstream of our country. They are the people who motivate me.

And I know that they have almost given up on any politician from any political party standing up for them.

For they see their modest incomes eaten away by more taxes every time they fill up their car or tear open their pay slip, and they wonder if any politician knows what its like to raise three children on a family budget that just won't stretch any further.

They see young thugs walking free from our courts, and they wonder if any politician knows what it's like to live on a council estate where the criminals take control after dark.

They see the independence of the country they love cast aside, and they wonder if any politician shares their patriotism and their pride in being British.

These people, the people I grew up with, the mainstream people of this country, are the people who motivate me.

And these are the people we will govern for. We will govern for hard working families. We will govern for people of every community and background. We will govern for the mainstream that New Labour has ignored. We will govern for all the people.

For when New Labour say to us that we're only appealing to core Conservative voters when we talk about crime and asylum and tax and Europe, I say to them that they have completely lost touch with the hard working families of this country.

I say to hard-working families everywhere: I know that you are looking at our Party and judging whether we are ready for government.

You know that we are tough on crime, and I tell you this: no government in recent times has been as tough on criminals as we will be.

You know that we want to reduce taxes, and no government in recent times has been as committed to cutting taxes as we will be.

You know that we believe in Britain, and no party will stand up for the rights and independence of our country with as much resolve and fortitude as we will.

You know all this, but I want you to hear something else you may not know.

The Conservative Party in Government will direct its energies to improving the schools that are the most hopeless, to bringing life to inner city areas that are the most bleak, to helping pensioners that are the least well off, to tackling drug problems that scar the least fortunate, to addressing family break down in the most dislocated communities, and to improving the health care for those most dependent on the NHS.

And it is because we are ready to do all these things that the message coming loud and clear from this Conference is that we are ready for government.

There are some who say there is a contradiction between traditional Conservative issues and winning new Tory audiences; between tolerance and mutual respect for all people, and championing the mainstream values of the country.

There is no contradiction. I say being tough on crime, believing in lower taxes and the robust defence of our nation's independence are not in contradiction with wanting better schools and hospitals and thriving inner cities; they are an essential part of achieving all those things. I say defeating political correctness and refusing simply to accept every demand from every pressure group is not in contradiction with respecting the differences between individuals; on the contrary, the championing of mainstream values is the championing of tolerance, mutual respect and the rich diversity of our country.

Only by trusting the instincts and the individuals and the institutions and the independence of the people of this country can we hope to seize the opportunity that this Government is so tragically squandering.

That's why we're going to lead a Common Sense Revolution.

That's why we're going to govern for the hard working, hard pressed, decent law abiding people of this country and bring an end to the rule of the small out-of-touch New Labour clique that thinks it is so much better than the rest of us.

We're going to govern for the families who've earned every penny they've got and need every penny they earn and want a Government that will cut taxes.

Three weeks ago we experienced something in this country we hadn't seen for more than 20 years. The pumps ran out of petrol, the shops ran out of bread, and the country came to a standstill. Labour governments, don't you just love 'em?

Tony Blair and his Government say we mustn't give in to pickets.

What a nice little lecture from the same Labour politicians who led the seamans' strike and encouraged the miner's strike and supported the secondary pickets.

If he'd really been listening, he'd never have introduced his stealth taxes and he'd never have had blockades and he'd never have had the vast majority of the people of this country join in a taxpayers' revolt.

Well if they don't understand the taxpayers revolt, we do. If he's not in sympathy with it, we are. And if he won't cut taxes, we will.

This Government has contempt for those who want low taxes. They think that wanting lower taxes is selfish and greedy.

Wanting to pay less tax isn't greedy. The truck driver who told me how he had to work day and night and sleep in his cab just to feed a family he scarcely got to see wasn't being greedy.

He was just desperate and angry to see that hard earned money he'd scraped together disappear in stealth taxes.

And I tell him now that the Conservative Party understands the life he's living and we see his desperation and we share his anger and we will govern for him.

Wanting to pay less tax isn't greedy. The young software consultant that I met who shook his head as he talked of his plans to move abroad because of the stealth taxes he now faces wasn't being greedy.

He just can't understand how this country can ever succeed if he's being taxed out of work in an era when business can go anywhere in the world and we need innovators so badly.

And I tell him now that the Conservative Party can see the damage being done to the economic future of our country and we see our talent going abroad and we share his belief that our country cannot afford it and we will govern for him.

Wanting to pay less tax isn't greedy. The countless hard working families whom I meet everywhere I go who talk of how difficult they find it to save money and keep their families together and live on just one income while bringing up children aren't being greedy.

They just feel betrayed by a Government that promised no tax increases at all.

And I tell them now that the Conservative Party understands their sense of betrayal and we know how difficult high taxes have made their lives and we are on their side - and we will govern for them.

All these people are looking to the Conservatives now and they want to know what we're going to do for them.

We know what we're going to do for them.

We're going to cut fuel tax. Three pence off a litre of petrol. Three pence off a litre of diesel.

We're going to restore a married couples allowance - because I believe marriage is the bedrock of a secure and stable society.

We're going to bring an end to the era of stealth taxes and start cutting the taxes paid by hard pressed families.

And we know how we're going to pay for it too.

We're going to make sure billions of pounds in surplus taxes raised by Gordon Brown goes back to taxpayers who earned it.

We're going to reform the welfare system so that we stop losing billions of pounds in fraud and so that those who can work must work.

We're going to stop wasting money on worthless Government schemes that are only designed to win headlines for Tony Blair.

We're going to reduce the number of Ministers, cut the size of the House of Commons, halve the number of political advisers and cut the whole size of Whitehall so that there aren't so many politicians going around dreaming up expensive meddling schemes to interfere in everybody else's lives.

Tony Blair may think his made-up numbers about Tory cuts will win him back a few votes. He couldn't be more wrong. People don't believe the phoney statistics and falsehoods he tells about his own policies and so they certainly won't believe the phoney statistics and falsehoods he tells about ours.

The British people know we can have lower taxes and better public services if we spend wisely. They know it can be done.

And we're going to do it.

For we're ready to govern for all the people.

We're going to govern for the parents who want their children to get the best chance in life, who want a Government that will deliver on education.

Last week I visited the largest comprehensive school in Birmingham. And the reporters said to me - "There's a grammar school nearby, why didn't you visit that?"

And I said "I've visited grammar schools and they do a superb job. But our task now is to raise standards for that vast majority of parents and pupils who haven't got a grammar school to choose from."

So I've been going to the inner city schools and talking to the pupils and the parents and the teachers.

I've been hearing the pupils talk about their hopes and their dreams and how determined they are to better themselves:

parents talk of how they want the right to choose the best schools for their children but feel that choice is denied to them;

teachers talk of how frustrated they are to spend so much time filling in forms and how difficult they find it keeping discipline when the Government tries to stop them excluding troublemakers;

head-teachers talk of the money that gets wasted on bureaucracy when it could be spent improving our schools.

It's time someone listened to these people. The Conservative Party is listening to these people and I am determined that we will govern for them.

All these people are looking to the Conservatives now and they want to know what we're going to do for them.

We know what we're going to do for them.

We're going to take the money that's spent by politicians and bureaucrats and let the schools spend it instead. £540 for every pupil.

We're going to endow our universities and set them free to be the best in the world.

We're going to create Free Schools that can determine their own ethos and decide their own admissions policy and set their own pay policy.

We're going to have tougher discipline in our schools because we're going to end the ridiculous situation where schools are penalised by the Government when they exclude pupils and are forced by politicians to take back those who disrupt classrooms. This is a policy that undermines discipline and makes teachers lives impossible and it's going to stop.

The British people know these things can be done.

And we're going to do them.

For we're ready to govern for all the people.

We're going to govern for the people who rely on the state pension and the National Health Service and think everyone should share in the growing prosperity of our country.

The Government seems confused at why pensioners are angry. But the reason is simple.

Pensioners don't like being treated with contempt by people like the Chairman of the Parliamentary Labour Party who said they were all "racists".

They don't like being talked down to by people like Peter Mandelson who said that they're not worth bothering with because they're not 'aspirational'.

I reject this language. Our pensioners should be treated with dignity and respect.

And they don't like being treated as charity cases by a Chancellor of the Exchequer who prefers to go on handing out means tested benefits and one off gimmicks because he thinks he knows best.

Labour has not governed for them. We will govern for them.

All these people are looking to the Conservatives now and they want to know what we're going to do for them.

We know what we're going to do for them.

We're going to take Gordon Brown's gimmicks and the administrative costs wasted on them and put that money back into the basic state pension. £5.50 more a week for every pensioner; £10 for an older pensioner couple.

We're going to match Labour penny for penny on the NHS and sweep away Labour's dogmatic opposition to private provision.

We're going to make sure every penny is spent on clinical priorities rather than the political priorities of Labour politicians.

We're going to give every young person in the country the chance to have a pension of their own far greater than the current state pension.

The British people know these things can be done.

And we're going to do them.

For we're ready to govern for all the people.

We're going to govern for the law abiding people of this country who have sometimes felt there wasn't a politician left prepared to champion their common sense values and instincts.

It's time we halted the march of political correctness.

Can you believe that Birmingham's Labour Council decided to rename Christmas 'the Winterval'?

Can you believe that Education Ministers supported a ban on musical chairs because they think the game encourages aggression?

Can you believe that they used Number 10 Downing Street to hold a summit on how many thin and fat people should appear on television?

I want all these people who despair of this politically correct idiocy to know that we're going to govern for them.

I want all the parents who think schools should respect their values and don't want Section 28 abolished to know that we're going to govern for them.

I want all the people who are angry at the way our asylum system is in chaos and just want enforcement of the rules - I want them to know that we're going to govern for them.

But nothing angers or frustrates the law abiding people of this country more than the failure of this Government to get a grip on rising crime.

Like the group of black teenagers I met in a Lambeth comprehensive four months ago. We got around a table in their classroom, and do you know what they said to me? 'The police have got their hands tied and they've lost it. Crime is rising and we're most likely to be the victims'.

These people are looking to the Conservatives now and they want to know what we're going to do for them.

We know what we're going to do for them.

We're going to restore Labour's cuts in our police force.

And we're going to stop tying their hands with red tape and politically correct nonsense. We're going to have less PC and more PCs.

We're going to have no more of Labour's early release schemes for rapists and burglars and muggers.

We're going to overhaul the law to make sure that it is on the side of the people defending their homes instead of the criminals breaking into those homes.

We're going to step up the war against drugs, not surrender to the drug dealers.

We're going to make sure that prisoners don't idle around in their cells but do a full working day.

We are going to give full force to the common sense instincts of the British people and we're going to win the war against crime.

The British people know these things can be done.

And we're going to do it.

For we're ready to govern for all the people.

And we're ready to govern for all parts of the country.

Earlier this year, I went to inner city housing estates in London and the north of England

I saw there how too many of their schools are failing, there aren't enough jobs available, the shops have gone, and the sprawling tower blocks are rabbit warrens for crime. It's the same story in many of our cities.

The people who live on these council estates have never looked to the Conservative Party for support, but I believe passionately that we still have a duty to help them.

We are going to reclaim their streets from the drug dealers and car thieves.

We are going to bulldoze the worst of the concrete tower blocks and ensure that there are new low rise homes where the criminals won't be welcome.

And by bringing life back to our inner cities, we will ease the relentless pressure of the developers on our countryside.

Only the most out of touch, metropolitan elite could regard the attack on our rural life and the desperate plight of our farmers as a source of amusement. Yet, in speech after speech, and joke after joke in Brighton last week, New Labour poked fun at the anger and hardship of the people of the countryside.

This Government thinks it is attacking only a small rural minority. In fact it is attacking the values of tolerance and respect, the values of the mainstream majority.

Rural people look to the Conservative Party to represent them and stand up for their way of life - and we will not let them down.

For we are ready to govern for all parts of the country - and by country I mean the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

But a Conservative Government will only be able to do all of these things, and govern for all the people, if we still have a country left to govern at all.

For this Labour Government is taking us down the road to a European superstate.

Britain is uniquely placed to take advantage of the opportunities of the twenty-first century.

We have a unique relationship with the United States, a unique relationship with Europe and a unique relationship with the Commonwealth.

Our language is the global language of the new economy.

It seems to me to be blindingly obvious and basic common sense that with so many opportunities opening before us, we should not hesitate to make the most of being British.

And the advantages of independence seem to have been blindingly obvious to the Danes too.

The result of the Danish referendum last week has once and for all demolished Labour's bogus arguments and scare tactics.

In a Europe where so many decisions are taken by bureaucratic elites, we should be celebrating the fact that at least in one country the people have spoken.

It now gives us a renewed opportunity to press the case for a different kind of Europe.

Now we must champion the cause of a flexible, free trading, low tax, lightly regulated Europe. A Europe that goes with the grain of the new global economy, in which nations combine in different combinations for different purposes to different extents.

We will be the champions of that flexible Europe. And we will be the champions of Britain's right to govern itself. For we believe in being in Europe not run by Europe.

So we will write into the law of our land the powers and rights that we hold today and which we will pass to the next generation, so that no stroke of a pen from Brussels, or retrospective court judgement, can take those rights away.

And we will champion the common sense instincts of young people who know that the idea of creating artificial, centralised supra-national superstates is an idea left behind in the twentieth century as they plan their lives in the twenty-first.

They too believe passionately that we should be making the most of being British. So I say to them, whatever else you might have thought about the Conservative Party and what we've done for Britain, it is only by coming with us that you can make sure that there will still be a Britain.

Making the most of being British means that if taxes are lower in Britain than elsewhere in Europe we should be making them lower still to ensure that we keep our competitive advantages.

Making the most of being British means that if our regulations are lighter than in Europe they should be lighter still for British businesses.

And making the most of being British means that if other countries give up their currencies and take on the job of applying one set of rules to every economy across Europe, we should say: good luck, we wish them well, but we will keep our Pound.

At the coming election, we will be the only Party committed to keeping the Pound, just as we will be the only Party committed to common sense on the countryside and on our inner cities, on crime, on education, on pensions, on health and on tax.

As we approach this election, conscious of our responsibility to provide a new government, clear in our principles for which only we can stand, resolved in our purpose to serve the people of our country, we know who we are and what we promise to be.

I don't promise the earth.

I don't think we'll solve every problem.

I don't think we'll avoid every mistake.

I won't try to start new fads or fashions.

I won't claim to be creating a new era.

I just want to govern with the common sense instincts of the people of this country.

I just want to govern with the common sense instincts of a proud people who believe in Britain.

In place of squandered opportunity and high taxation, the determination to seize the opportunity of a new economy.

In place of dogmatic interference and Whitehall knows best, the certain belief in the freedom of people to make their own choices about their schools and hospitals.

In place of political correctness and the noise of the pressure group, the quiet trust in the tolerance and mutual respect of the British people.

In place of fear on our streets and the menace of drugs, the absolute conviction that the war against crime can be won.

In place of the cringeing surrender of our rights as a country, the confident assertion of our right to be a nation.

I just want to govern with the common sense instincts of a people that believes in Britain and its values and institutions.

I just want to bring to a people so deeply disillusioned by its Government,

A Party that understands their concerns.

A Party that shares their values.

A Government that believes in our country.

A Conservative Government, ready to govern for all the people."

Keyboard shortcuts

j previous speech k next speech