Theresa May caught by prankster during nightmare speech to conference

Saul Bowman
October 7, 2017

Mrs May's comments follow former party chairman Grant Shapps' claim that he and 30 other MPs - including "one or two Cabinet ministers" - had agreed to call on her to resign. We wanted to present that to Theresa May privately.

"This is a Conservatism I believe in, a Conservatism of fairness and justice and opportunity for all, a Conservatism that keeps the British Dream alive for a new generation", she told the cheering crowd.

She also apologized for the general election earlier this year, in which the Conservative Party lost its parliamentary majority.

In a keynote conference speech where the protester and a coughing fit brought her words nearly to a halt, Mrs May won over many members in the hall by promising to reinvigorate the party and offering pledges to younger people and families alike.

Grant Shapps, who served as Tory chair for almost three years, has emerged as the ringleader of a backbench plot to force May to step down and told BBC Radio 4's Today programme the solution to the leadership crisis was not "to bury our heads in the sand".

"There are some ex-Cabinet ministers or ex-ministers who are extremely embittered individuals who just want to get their own back on the fact that they don't feel recognised".

He said the group of MPs supporting him included members across policy divides and covered Brexiteers and those who supported remaining in the European Union (EU).

When asked if she should quit, Vaizey replied: "I'm finding it increasingly hard to see a way forward at the moment, and it worries me".

The Herald says a major security review is under way after a prankster was able to lunge towards Theresa May with a P45 as she delivered her keynote speech at the conference in Manchester.

He said: "It is a concern that someone could get so close to the Prime Minister and it was an unexpected distraction, but she dealt with it with grace". She lacks the icy determination of Margaret Thatcher and the marketing savvy of ex-Labour leader Tony Blair, but Mrs.

Charles Walker, the vice-chairman of the influential Tory backbench 1922 Committee, also came out strongly against the Shapps-led coup attempt.

Taking a swipe at Mr Shapps this morning, Mr Walker told the BBC: "Number 10 must be delighted that it's Grant Shapps leading this alleged coup".

Home Secretary Amber Rudd added: "The Prime Minister will continue in her role to do an excellent job".

A senior ally of Theresa May has warned rebel Conservative MPs that there is no mood in the party for a leadership challenge.

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