May declares an 'end to austerity' amid fierce attack on Corbyn

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Her own future remains full of uncertainty.

On the eve of May's keynote speech to the Conservative Party Conference in Birmingham, Johnson laid into the proposed Brexit blueprint and said the British public would be unforgiving if the government got it wrong. Since then he has launched thinly-veiled attacks on the proposal.

"A large section of the country thinks he is a clown", he said.

"The country wants, seemingly, something different", O'Neill said.

He said: "It wasn't that I expected any impact from it, it's simply what I believed to be right".

Admitting that the housing market is "broken", she announced she was lifting the cap on councils borrowing to fund new developments, with the aim of "building the homes this country needs".

And she announced the setting up of a new cancer detection network where Global Positioning System will send all patients with possible cancer symptoms to rapid diagnostic centres.

The only thing the Conservative councillor for Fulwell was correct on was the fact Jeremy Corbyn has designs on being prime minister, and considering he is leader of the opposition that's quite obvious. What else did she say in this speech?

"My support for her is wearing thin to the point of being invisible". And the spendthrift failures of the previous labour administration that had led to those hard choices being made.

She defended her Chequers plan once again, saying it is one that "delivers on the vote of the British people", she said, adding that "it means we take back control of our money, our borders and our laws".

"There is a massive gulf between her rhetoric and the reality of what is now facing the UK".

"It is an absolute necessity, if we're not going to keep increasing spending in line with demand, to have a plan setting out how to run services differently in order to make them fundamentally cheaper to run", she said.

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Taking a swipe at Mr Johnson, Mrs May said she was taking decisions on Brexit in the "national interest", pressing her argument that her former foreign secretary's alternative Brexit proposals would tear the United Kingdom apart.

"If he can not, or will not, then Theresa May's announcement today was not just empty - it was clearly a deceitful attempt to trick the public".

It was a warm welcome for a leader whose fragile position at the helm of her party has been put under further pressure after the European Union rejected parts of her so-called Chequers plan and critics stepped up calls for her to ditch her strategy on Brexit, Britain's biggest policy shift for more than 40 years.

And to cap it all, the Tory Brexiteers stand on the deck spouting courageous words but do nothing to save themselves and their party. Forty-eight such letters are needed to trigger a vote of confidence in the leader.

The MP for Rochford and Southend East, James Duddridge, submitted his letter to the party chairman minutes before Theresa May was due on stage. But what I am saying is that even if the whips did fantastically well and got the numbers down to 40 it still seems to me that it will be voted down.

May's unexpectedly disarming conference speech followed, exhorting the party to come together, or Brexit is at risk.

Corbyn did offer a lifeline to the prime minister, however.

"We are entering the toughest phase of the negotiations".

Theresa May's conference speech - key words.

'May is as stubborn as a mule, ' a French diplomatic source said, casting doubt on whether the British premier could even muster a parliamentary majority to approve any eventual deal.

"We should try to get as much of a final deal as we can get by 29 March, but it's self-evident that if it's a bilateral treaty, it can be revised later on", he told Bloomberg.