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‘A phoney outsider’: Corbyn attacks Johnson as he sets out election pitch – The Guardian

Jeremy Corbyn will accuse Boris Johnson of being a “fake populist and phoney outsider” in the mould of Donald Trump as he sets out his election pitch to transform the country as radically as Labour did in 1945 with the creation of the welfare state.

The Labour leader will give a flagship speech in the key marginal seat of Corby in the east Midlands as speculation grows about an election in the coming weeks.

Speaking at a children’s centre on Monday, Corbyn will promise to do “everything necessary to stop a disastrous no-deal Brexit”, although he has so far insisted that he must be the one to lead a caretaker government to extend article 50 if Johnson loses a confidence vote.

Following the leak of documents warning of protests and food shortages in the event of a no-deal Brexit, he will attack Johnson for the Conservative party’s “failure on Brexit, and its lurch to the hard right, which has provoked the crisis our country faces this autumn”.

He will say: “Boris Johnson’s government wants to use no deal to create a tax haven for the super-rich on the shores of Europe and sign a sweetheart trade deal with Donald Trump: not so much a no-deal Brexit as a Trump-deal Brexit.”

In some of his hardest rhetoric against the prime minister, he will brand Johnson a “hard right” leader who has made himself into “Britain’s Trump, the fake populist and phoney outsider, funded by the hedge funds and bankers, committed to protecting the vested interests of the richest and the elites, while posing as anti-establishment”.

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With all parties now preparing for an autumn election, Corbyn will reiterate his pledge that Labour would commit to another EU referendum in the party’s manifesto. This would “give voters the final say, with credible options for both sides, including the option to remain”, he will say.

Corbyn will also argue that the country is facing even greater and deeper problems than the huge threat of a no-deal Brexit.

A general election triggered by the Tory Brexit crisis will be a crossroads for our country. It will be a once-in-a-generation chance for a real change of direction, potentially on the scale of 1945 or 1979 [when Margaret Thatcher defeated Labour, ushering in 18 years of Conservative rule]. Things cannot go on as they were before,” he will say.

“However the Brexit crisis is resolved, the country faces a fundamental choice. Labour offers the real change of direction the country needs: a radical programme to rebuild and transform communities and public services, invest in the green jobs and high-tech industries of the future, and take action to tackle inequality and climate crisis.”

In a possible sign of Labour’s approach to a forthcoming general election, Corbyn will say the contest will come down to who is most trusted by the public.

Labour has already released a political advert featuring a personal attack against Johnson, listing ways he cannot be trusted, from being sacked for lying about an affair to breaking political promises.

“The Tories under Boris Johnson cannot be trusted to deliver on their quick-fix election promises – because their first priority is tax cuts for the big corporations and the richest,” he will say.

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“Boris Johnson and the Tories can’t be trusted to deliver for the majority because they will always look after their own. Instead of fixing a failed system, they will turbo-charge its inequalities, insecurities and climate destruction.”

He will pledge that Labour will reinvigorate politics and “rebuild our public services by taxing those at the top to properly fund services for everyone”.

He will say: “We will drive up people’s living standards by boosting pay, improving rights and running our utilities and parts of the economy in the interests of the millions, not the multi-millionaires. And we will transform our communities with investment in every part of our country, breathing new life into our high streets, giving security to older people and hope and opportunities to our young people.”


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