Theresa May was front and centre again today of her party’s election campaign, speaking in York in front of blue boardings which shouted: “ THERESA MAY’S TEAM”. “Funny how times change,” Michael Deacon quipped. “I’m old enough to remember when they were called the Conservative Party.”
A key member of Team Theresa is entering the fray for the first time tonight: her husband Philip. They will be sitting down on the BBC’s One Show sofa for their first joint TV interview. Tory sources hope this appearance will help bring out her “human side”, as Mr May is said to be the Prime Minister’s “ secret weapon”. Aides believe that his natural charm will ensure the 25-minute interview flows smoothly. “He is very good at doing small talk,” a friend said. That doesn’t mean the Mays have nothing to fear from this encounter, as presenter Matt Baker ambushed David Cameron when he appeared in 2011 by asking him “ how do you sleep at night?” He didn’t have his spouse there alongside him, but he did at one point share the sofa with a nice barn owl.
Jeremy Corbyn wouldn’t have given the Prime Minister much to worry about at his election campaign launch today, as he has struggled to get his position straight on Brexit. The issue had been “settled”, he said, but he refused seven times to commit to taking Britain out of the EU when grilled afterwards by the BBC’s Laura Kuenssberg. Meanwhile, Condoleezza Rice has weighed in with her thoughts on Labour’s current woes. The former US secretary of state suggested to conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt that the party does “need renovation” as it has “gotten a bit inbred”. Followers of parties like Mr Corbyn’s “talk only to themselves”, she added.
The Labour leader tried to show he was up for the fight, insisting that voters could “ruin” the Tories’ party by backing him in June. But the latest polls suggest that remains a distant prospect. Matt Baker could end up inflicting more damage on Team May than Mr Corbyn could. It all depends on if he is planning to ambush another Conservative leader tonight.
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