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tv   BBC News  BBC News  May 24, 2019 7:00pm-7:45pm BST

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this is bbc this is bbc news. i am vicky young in downing street. it is over. in two weeks‘ time theresa may will step down as leader of the conservative party but will remain in downing street until the new leader is elected. it is and will always remain a matter of deep regret to me that i have not been able to deliver brexit. it will be for my successor to seek a way forward that honours the result of the referendum. to succeed, he or she will have to find consensus in she said she left with no ill will
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and enormous gratitude. i do so with no ill will but with enormous and enduring gratitude to have had the opportunity to serve the country i love. there were immediate tributes from rivals with a new conservative leader and prime minister due a number ten by the end ofjuly. the prime minister‘s put her heart and soul into trying to do the best for this country at a difficult time, facing a challenging climate in parliament. a little later she left downing street that labour say her departure from number ten for good changes nothing and it is a country that must decide the prime minister. we need a general election are not another conservative leader installed.
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good evening from downing street where after much speculation and pressure from within our own party and the cabinet theresa may laid out and the cabinet theresa may laid out a timetable for her departure as prime minister. in an emotional speech outside number ten she said she had done her best to deliver brexit and it was a matter of deep regret she had not been able to deliver. she will step in on the 7th ofjune and resign as conservative leader but stay on as caretaker prime minister until her party chooses her successor. that contested will begin three days later in the tenth of with conservative mps letting to candidates who will be voted on by party members. that result will be
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expected at the end ofjuly with the successful candidate becoming britain‘s new leader. mrs may said it had been the honour half her life becoming pie minister and warned her successof becoming pie minister and warned her successor that it would require compliance. future. —— mike prime minister. a broken government and a broken prime minister. time to forget instructions. the men in suits walk out then silence drops. as with every leader it is normally at the end. the cameras clicked just for
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them. ever since i first stepped through the door behind me as prime minister, i have striven to make the united kingdom a country that works notjust for a privileged few, but for everyone. and to honour the result of the eu referendum. back in 2016, we gave the british people a choice. i negotiated the terms of our exit and a new relationship with our closest neighbours that protects jobs, our security and our union. i have done everything i can to convince mps to back that deal. sadly, i have not been able to do so. i tried three times. i believe it was right to persevere, even when the odds against success seemed high. but it is now clear to me that it is in the best interests of the country for a new prime minister to lead that effort. so i am today announcing that i will resign as leader of the conservative and unionist party on friday 7th
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june so a successor can be chosen. painful for painfulfor her inner painful for her inner circle. after all the agony of trying to get parliament on side someone else to try now. it will be for my successor. there will only be success if we are able to compromise. with the country watching on, this inscrutable leader, emotional after watching on, this inscrutable leader, emotionalafterall. whatever background, the colour of her skin and who we love, we stand together and together we have a great future. i politics may be
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under strain but there is so much thatis under strain but there is so much that is good about this country. so much to be proud of, so much to be optimistic about. i will shortly leave the job that it has been the honour of my life to hold. the second female pie minister but certainly not the last. prime minister. i do so with no ill will but with enormous and enduring gratitude to have had the opportunity to serve the country i love. for so long theresa may fought to hold onto her party and her premiership but that is now exhausted and her time in office nearly done. there is no immediate exit. she will stay until a new leader is chosen by the tory party
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at the end ofjuly but who? coy, for now. i find it moving. the prime minister‘s put her heart and soul into trying to do the best for this country at a difficult time, facing a challenging climate in parliament. a little later she left downing street that labour the first confirmed he would run at a meeting at his constituencyjust a few hours later. that will now be someone few hours later. that will now be someone else‘s responsibility and whoever succeeds in doing that will know that she laid the foundations. and no prizes for guessing who will also be one of a cast of may be more than one dozen speaking at a conference in switzerland today? i do not wish to elaborate now on what we will do and how we do it. i
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believe you will be hearing possibly more about that then you necessarily wa nt more about that then you necessarily want to. and they all know tory prime ministers often depart downing street because of europe. it is a very big moment and a sad moment because she cared passionately about thejob and because she cared passionately about the job and the country and wanted to serve the public. when you know your time is to serve the public. when you know yourtime is up to serve the public. when you know your time is up it is extremely hard to take. any of them would have to wrangle to seem divided party. eurosceptics will do almost anything to get their way. whose fault is this? wasn't it harry s truman had in his office the motto that the buck stops here. the block always stops in downing street. someone a lwa ys stops in downing street. someone always has to answer the question of these protesters, where is the government? who will lead? there has
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to be another opportunity for the people of this country to decide who should be the government and how they want the government run and what the long—term strategies and nothing to do that but the general election. problems of our politics will not disappearjust with a new tory leader. i'm not sure change the fundamentals of brexit. brexit is an utter mess and it looks to be the only way to resolve it is to put it back to the people. you cannot see power and you cannot touch power that in the street you feel it profoundly when it is fallen away. there has been speculation for months about who could replace theresa may as the conservative leader ever since she confirmed she would stand down in an effort to get mps to discuss her brexit deal. let‘s look at some of the main contenders. some mps have already thrown hats into the ring. the
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foreign secretary jeremy thrown hats into the ring. the foreign secretaryjeremy hunt has been building support amongst mps. can you get support amongst party members should he find his name in the final ballot? then boris johnson the former foreign secretary is a popular within the grassroots of the party, a recent poll indicated that almost 40% of party members would support him as leader. then there‘s the current foreign secretaryjeremy hunt. he‘s been building support among mps, but can he get the support of the party members should he find his name on the final ballot? former work and pensions secretary esther mcvey has also confirmed she‘ll stand. as has rory stewart, international development secretary. we‘re also expecting to hear a few more people putting their names forward and andrea leadsom who quit on wednesday. she says she is seriously considering running again.
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sir graham brady. this afternoon he‘s stood down as the chairman of the 1922 committee of backbench mps, so he can consider whether to run in the conservative leadership race. the former brexit secretary dominic raab, now we can speak tojohn redwood. what did you feel when you heard the pie to say farewell? i felt sorry for her as a person. she has been offending and a neighbourfor several years. but i had offending and a neighbourfor severalyears. but i had been privately and publicly urging her to change a policy and seeing if you change a policy and seeing if you change stayed with the dreadful treaty it was bound to end in tears and i‘m very sorry it did so. she could not understand that it was not just a large number of mps that did like the agreement, the country doesn‘t like it. the voters and
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remain vote still like it for different reasons. she managed to unite the whole country against this dreadful treaty. because lots of people are not willing to compromise. people do not like it for different reasons. some people wa nt for different reasons. some people want a no—deal brexit and some don‘t wa nt want a no—deal brexit and some don‘t want brexit to tell. the next leader will have to deal with that. there are differences over what we would like the future to beat but a lot of agreement over what was wrong with the treaty and we kept explaining to her this was not leading but nor was it staying in with vote and voice. it was a strange hybrid we had to pay all the bills. there were new laws they would determine the characters we no longer have vote and voice. it was clearly worse than leaving properly and worse than staying in. it looks like there could be maybe 16 candidates throwing hats into the ring for this
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contest. do you have any views on who should take over? not yet because it is far too early and my first advice would be to think very carefully. i6 first advice would be to think very carefully. 16 is far too many and we do not want to spend weeks in the mp pa rt do not want to spend weeks in the mp part of the context trying to winnow it down to two to present to our members. i think this should be thinking and deal—making in the next few days so the mp context that contest has a realistic number of candidates to give us a choice. i have one question for the candidates and my decision will be made on how they answer it. how are the three yea rs they answer it. how are the three years on from the referendum going to get us out of the eu cleanly and sensibly? i think the only way is to go to brussels and say we are very sorry, we made a mistake with this agreement and it is not something the british people will ever accept so we intend to leave but we would like a free trade agreement and we will leave anyway. i think i want a
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leader who will do that properly and get this behind us and get on before the exciting policies we can have a new budget and spending more money and having a boost to the economy and having a boost to the economy and sorting out the fishing industry and sorting out the fishing industry and farming which is why they voted brexit in the first place. what about the parliamentary arithmetic? that will not change even though the prime minister. there are still many and summon your prime minister. there are still many and summon your own prime minister. there are still many and summon your own party who say they will do anything to stop a no—deal brexit. —— some people in your own party. it would not be a no—deal brexit, it would be a many deals brexit with a transport deal and custom steel and already ideal about government procurement. —— customs deal. —— ideal about government procurement. the fact is the british voters decided and labour and conservative mps were voted to implement their wishes. a
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sensible conservative leader and premise that can make sure parliament does not put an obstacle in the way. it would require no clear legislation approved by parliament to stand in the way of as leading at the latest on the 31st of october. john redwood, thank you very much. let‘s look at the european reaction to the announcement by theresa may. the german chancellor, angela merkel, said her government will work to maintain strong ties with britain, whatever happens in the future. translation: i always worked well with theresa may. regardless of what happens in britain at the javert government will work hard to achieve a good
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partnership and i hope that will remain the case in the future. after years of tough talks, draft agreements, renegotiations, parliamentary defeats, and delays to brexit. .. europe‘s leaders are now facing the prospect of a new british prime minister. our europe editor katya adler sent this update from brussels. it doesn‘t change and it does change things. a change that brussels believes is coming is that a new prime minister will probably want to come here to try to renegotiate the brexit deal, particularly that controversial backstop guarantee for the irish border. eu leaders have said today absolutely not,
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they will not budge. they feel they have been round that block for the last two years, and theresa may signed off on the brexit deal back in november. the concern in brussels is that if the new prime minister doesn‘t get his or her way, they could be tempted to use what one eu diplomat described to me today as dirty tactics, trying to obstruct eu business like trying to pass the new budget or threatening to trigger a no—deal brexit in a way that they never believed he theresa may was willing to do. that current brexit extension lasts until the 31st of october, and the assumption is the new prime minister will want more time to try to renegotiate the brexit deal or to hold a general election. how does this affect the political landscape in scotland and wales and northern ireland? here isa and wales and northern ireland? here is a serious matter. nicola sturgeon
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has wasted no time in arguing a new tory leader could strengthen the case for scottish independence and says the prospect of a hardline pro—brexit leader ticking over and the prospect of britain leaving the eu with no deal and sit on the more important scotland should get a choice that it wants to be an independent country and that is why scottish tories will want the next leader to do the same thing theresa may did and refuse to allow any further referendums on scottish independence. ruth davidson says she will lack leadership candidate who someone will lack leadership candidate who someone shows that deep commitment to stop remaining part of the uk and someone to stop remaining part of the uk and someone who is a unifier and can try and bring the whole country together. here in northern ireland it was issues thrown up by the irish border that forced theresa may to
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deal with the biggest problem in negotiation she couldn‘t overcome a never managed to persuade her supported allies, the democratic unionist party to support her deal. that confidence and supply arrangement with something that sinn fein have been very critical of. it is due to expire and will be renegotiated shortly after her successor ta kes renegotiated shortly after her successor takes up the role. the irish prime minister has said that the resignation of theresa may could be dangerous for ireland and expose them to the effects of a heart brexit. that is some nervousness in ireland tonight and here in northern ireland tonight and here in northern ireland where the majority of people voted to remain in the eu. here in cardiff bay the labour first
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minister martin dra keford —— drakeford —— mark. has said a conservative leadership campaign is the last thing the country needs. but many welsh mps have come together to deliver the brexit that the country voted for and wales overall voted to leave the european union. there is a feeling that the conservatives and labour here could feel the impact of the surge of support for the brexit party when the results of the european elections are announced. after the announcement that theresa may will step down attention in westminster has been turning to who succeeds and what they will do the brexit situation. here are a of conservative mps who told the bbc what they think will
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happen next. i find it sad because it demonstrates the conservative parliamentary party is obsessed with brexit and nothing else but it is probably likely beget one of the two candidates who is determined lever. —— that we get one of the two candidates. —— determined to leave the eu. they might be offering something they can‘t deliver and there will be somebody who is perhaps more from the mainstream. i think probably this will end up a race that between someone who wants to leave and someone who wants to remain andi to leave and someone who wants to remain and i think that is a good outcome. i guess jeremy remain and i think that is a good outcome. i guessjeremy hunt who has been distinguished as for the second —— foreign secretary who has been remain up as i was during the referendum but accept the country voted to leave and says he will pursue a proper brexit and under the site you are down to really either
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dominic raab are borisjohnson. site you are down to really either dominic raab are boris johnsonlj think the person who demonstrated there stability in government who is up there stability in government who is up brexit is michael gove who led the league campaign was one of the people who led that campaign and has demonstrated into three departments he has a remarkable ability to be transformative in office and i think thatis transformative in office and i think that is something we need. we know blah our renewal. this issue is that we have not landed a brexit outcome and there are many parliamentarians such as myself and many others who wa nt such as myself and many others who want a brexit conclusion but want a post brexit vision. we want to push britain back onto the international stage and re—engage with the international community but also look at those domestic issues which
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the nation wants us to focus on. if we do is talk about brexit as i stressed, all we have been doing is handing the keys to number ten to jeremy corbyn. jonathan blake, a political correspond is with us. that is a wide field of candidates behind the scene for several weeks but now in the open. many people think borisjohnson is ahead of the field. he seems to be the frontrunner as things stand but that was a danger because you have the furthest file. he has been speaking today and i think that is interesting whilst people like michael gove and jeremy hunt have chosen their words carefully and pay tribute to theresa may today boris johnson has been at a swiss economic co nfe re nce johnson has been at a swiss economic conference sounding off about brexit and giving us an indication of the campaign he may well run. he's already said we will be leaving under his leadership at the end of
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october with or without a deal though he said no deal situation is not something he necessarily wants or will naturally that it might necessarily happen. he will attempt to renegotiate the northern ireland backstop with the european union. he is setting out is still quite angry in his campaign which is not yet officially started and it is not quite the gung ho no deal message you might have expected him to come out with. so you might have expected him to come outwith. so maybe he is trying to appeal to more moderate members of the conservative party and he needs out the conservative party and he needs our support. many mps do not like a candidate. the new leader will have to not only unify the new party get some deal three parliament because the parliamentary arithmetic does not change. if you change the prime minister you do not change the problems theresa may changed. they
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are to the conservative party and whoever is prime minister. the deadline and timetable for brexit is still as it stands with that deadline of the 31st of october and the eu position will not change. there may well be with a new leader a momentum and an opportunity to seize with mps thinking they may have to change their minds and their positions on things and positions may well change on that basis but it isa may well change on that basis but it is a big court for the new leader does make a big load for the new leader to have and they will have a difficultjob. leader to have and they will have a difficult job. it feels pretty brutal moving on to talk about the next leader when only a few hours since theresa may stayed here and gave that the emotional farewell. is there anything she can look back on as her legacy? you could hear her trying to come up with a few things but really, three years and not having achieved much at all. so hard to see past brexit and it was her measure of success. she stood here
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three years ago saying she wanted to address the burning injustices in society and lead a government on the side of all people, particularly the disenfranchised but brexit became the big issue of her premiership and she said it was her mission to deliver it. she lifted that today when she made her speech today at downing street three years on she had failed. perhaps what you talked about today, typing domestic violence and housing policy and other issues will undoubtedly be her failure to deliver brexit people remember her premiership four.l challenge for whoever takes over will stop jonathan blake, thank challenge for whoever takes over will stopjonathan blake, thank you very much indeed. theresa may rose to lead the conservative party with the decisive backing of her mps after six months of running the home office and a reputation for tough talking. i remain who became a cheerleader for brexit cheap suffered disaster after calling a
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general election and losing her majority. brexit led to her demise, another conservative leader toppled by the debate over. theresa may rose to the top job at one of the most turbulent periods in british political history. after the uk‘s vote to leave the european union, david cameron dramatically resigned and she became the country‘s second female prime minister. as we leave the european union, we will forge a bold new, positive role for ourselves in the world, and we will make britain a country that works not for a privileged few but for all of us. during her first months she stated
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her ambition to make a success of brexit. during her first months as prime minister, she was under constant pressure to lay out her approach to brexit negotiations, but refused to give much away. brexit means brexit, and we are going to make a success of it. becoming prime minister had been a long—held ambition. the daughter of a vicar, theresa brasier, as she then was, was mainly state educated in oxfordshire before studying geography at oxford university. in her third year, she met her future husband, philip. after graduating, mrs may went to work in the city but she saw her future in politics. she became a councillor in south london and, after standing for parliament twice, she was elected the mp
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for maidenhead in 1997. as party chairman, she made the case for conservative modernisation, telling her party some hard truths during their years in opposition. our base is too narrow and so occasionally are our sympathies. you know what some people call us? the nasty party. under david cameron, she became the longest serving home secretary of modern times but, as prime minister, she faced an even tougher challenge, trying to steer the uk and her party through brexit. this most cautious of politicians became one of westminster‘s biggest risk takers. i have concluded that the only way to guarantee certainty and stability for the years ahead is to hold this election and seek your support for the decisions i must take. the gamble backfired. she lost the conservatives their majority, only hanging on to power through a deal with the dup. her political misjudgments left her weakened, and reasserting her message during this important conference speech was lost amid a catalogue of interruptions, a prankster, a faulty set and persistent cough. she coughs. excuse me. after months of negotiations with brussels, mrs may agreed a withdrawal deal, but the compromise to avoid border checks on the island of ireland wasn‘t one that many in her party or her partners in government, the dup, could accept. the ayes to the right, 202. the noes to the left, 432. that was the first of three defeats in the commons,
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and mrs may was forced to ask the european union for a delay to brexit. nigel farage‘s new brexit party surged in popularity and her colleagues finally moved against her. theresa may never wanted brexit to define her time in office, but it was the backdrop to everything her government did. she was praised for her tenacity and sense of duty, but critics said she lacked vision and regarded brexit as a damage limitation exercise. vicki young, bbc news, westminster. we will have more throughout the evening. next, it is time for the weather forecast. the weather is looking more unsettled as we head into the bank holiday weekend. we had some warm sunshine today. the best of it for the eastern side of the uk. a lot more cloud coming in from the atlantic, producing some showers. some of those around at the moment. they will fade away overnight. we will see rain across northern scotland moving through. a lot of dry weather overnight. clear spells across northern areas and we will find temperatures down to six
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or7 will find temperatures down to six or 7 degrees. pretty mild elsewhere. cloud coming in through into northern ireland, bringing a little rain and drizzle. through the day, that will set in across scotland, as the cloud seconds. later on, rein in the cloud seconds. later on, rein in the north of england. we will hang on to the sunshine and the warmth in the south—east. it could be showers. 22 degrees in the south. getting cooler on sunday and monday.
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good evening. this is bbc news. the headlines, it is over. in two weeks‘ time, theresa may will step down as leader of the conservative party but she will remain in downing street until a new leader is elected. i will shortly leave the job that has been the honour of my life to hold. the second female prime minister, but certainly not the last. i do so with no ill will. but with enormous and enduring gratitude to have had the opportunity to serve the country i love. there were immediate tribute from rivals with a new prime minister doing number ten by the end ofjuly.
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the prime minister has tried to do her best for this country at a difficult time, facing a challenging climate in parliament. theresa may later left downing street but her departure forward good changes nothing, says labour, saying it is the country that should decide who is prime minister. i think we need a general election. we don‘t need another tory leader installed by tory mps. let‘s have a look at some other stories. two teenage boys have died and four other children have been taken to hospital after an incident at a house in sheffield. a man and a woman have been arrested on suspicion of murder. danny savage is there. police were called at 7:30am and six children were taken to hospital. at lunchtime, the police revealed the elders, boys aged 13 and 1a, had died. the otherfour elders, boys aged 13 and 1a, had
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died. the other four children, elders, boys aged 13 and 1a, had died. the otherfour children, aged seven months, three, ten and 11, had much less serious injuries and they are not expected to be in hospital for much longer. what happened, we don‘t know. there was speculation about a shooting and the police had to say there was not a weapon involved. they were also asked about a possible poisoning and again they said they would not be drawn on any details about what happened. a man and a woman in their 30s have been arrested and are being questioned on suspicion of murder. a suspected parcel bomb has exploded in a shopping street in the french city of lyon, injuring eight people. local police say none of the injuries appear to be life—threatening. the area where the explosion occurred has been evacuated. speaking soon after the incident, president macron described the blast as an attack. local media reports say the improvised device had been filled with nails and screws. ten members of staff at a specialist hospital in county durham have been arrested, following a bbc panorama investigation into the alleged mistreatment of vulnerable people. police say they‘re investigating claims that patients with learning
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disabilities and autism were physically ad psychologically abused at whorlton hall, a privately run unit funded by the nhs. president trump has announced the united states is sending 1500 more troops to the middle east in what he called a protective measure. it comes at a time of growing tension between the us and iran. another aircraft carrier has already been sent to the gulf. president trump says he is responding to an increased threat from iran and its allies. the number of homeless households in england living in bed and breakfast accommodation increased by more than 20% last year. official figures from the ministry of housing, communities and and show that almost 7000 households are being accommodated in
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b&bs, a third offer were families with children. the chartered institute of housing has called the figures a national disgrace. let‘s get more on our top story now and theresa may stepping down as leader of the conservative party into weeks‘ time but she will remain in downing street until a new leader is elected. let‘s return to our chief political correspondent that downing street. thank you very much. the next prime minister will be chosen by members of the conservative party. around 120,000 of them will determine the shape of brexit and the future of the country. what is their take on theresa may‘s departure? hitting younger voters has proved elusive at times for the tories. these students are supporters and members of reading university‘s conservative association. theresa may is their patron. many have campaigned alongside her. so what of her decision
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to step down? i think it‘s a really sad day. i think she‘s tried her best for the country, and it‘s always sad to see someone forced out of office. anyone pleased to see her go? yes. laughter for me, she should have gone after the election. she hasn't really listened or heeded advice from anyone else. i think we need a new leader, a new direction. hopefully someone who can get the brexit business finished once and for all so we can move on. these young tory members will vote in the upcoming leadership contest. even here, views are divided. for me, it has to be a brexiteer, because we've got to fight the brexit party. the brexit party could potentially do very well at the expense of the conservative party. is that the consensus? no, i‘d rather see sort of a middle ground. and while brexit should definitely take place, it has to be done in an effective way that is going to please, you know, the most amount of people as possible. i think there needs to be compromise. the next generation of voters says a new approach is needed to keep the party relevant.
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there has to be a real change of direction for the rest of the young people to come on board, otherwise we're just going to end up with the same result of, you know, the older people voting for the conservatives, and young people just being dis—aligned with the cause. we need someone that can come in and sell conservative ideology, and that is charismatic and outgoing. theresa may hasn't been that. so, for me, someone like boris would be able to do that. ijust think he‘s a bit of a clown. i think a lot of young people think that too. they aren‘t sure any leader can easily overcome the europe question. i don‘t think it‘s possible, really. i think it‘s going to, like, carry on until we leave. while brexit is really important, i think you then also need to look at the wider politics as a whole and actually have a plan for the future and notjust right now. are you feeling optimistic or pessimistic about the party‘s prospects at this point? optimistic. i'm more pessimistic. i think for any leader, they're not going to be able to get anything passed parliament. the party will be fine. i mean, it's been through ups and downs through its whole history,
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and it's quite a long history, so i think it will be fine no matter what. that might depend on the next leader. alex forsyth, bbc news, reading. theresa may became prime minister after david cameron resigned, due to the eu referendum result. earlier today, he voiced his sympathy for theresa may over her decision to stand down. i feel desperately sorry for her and she worked incredibly hard. she was a dedicated public servant and i know what it feels like when you come to realise that your leadership time has finished, that the country needs a new leader, and it is extremely difficult and painful to step outside downing street and to say those things but i think she is and she was a dedicated public servant, she worked incredibly hard on our behalf and i think she deserves our gratitude for that and this will be a very difficult day. how will her leadership and premiership you remembered? she will be remembered
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as someone remembered? she will be remembered as someone who worked very hard on our behalf and was a dedicated public servant and was passionate about the future of this country. her government continued a strong economic record with record numbers of people in work, unemployment falling, the economy growing, obviously huge difficulties but she worked incredibly hard to try and ove rco m e worked incredibly hard to try and overcome them. you said to me last time we spoke that the drama —— problem for the prime minister was that people who want brexit in the conservative party just were that people who want brexit in the conservative partyjust were not voting for it. i know that she will feel extremely frustrated, as i think many others feel frustrated, that ultimately the people who most wa nted that ultimately the people who most wanted brexit in the end would vote for it and as she said today, in the end, you have to compromise on politics, compromises not a dirty word, you have to... you can‘t a lwa ys word, you have to... you can‘t always get what you want and it is a shame that people could not see that. that was the former prime minister, david cameron. earlier, my colleague ben brown spoke to lord heseltine, the former conservative
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deputy prime minister. he said he felt for theresa may on a personal level but warned of political turbulent ahead. it is obviously for anyone leaving positions of that sort in those circumstances deeply emotional. and one can understand the personal feelings. emotional. and one can understand the personalfeelings. but emotional. and one can understand the personal feelings. but the fact of the matter is that we have the biggest medical and constitutional crisis of my lifetime in peacetime facing us and the issue is as unresolved today as it was yesterday. we are going into a very dangerous and difficult period, particularly for the conservative party, and the sunday announcements about the european elections results will showjust how much of a problem, much of a challenge, it is for the conservative party. you are
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still in the conservative party, although you have had the whip withdrawn because you said you would vote for the liberal democrats because of brexit. where do you think the conservative party stands now and where is it going and if it is borisjohnson who is going to succeed theresa may, what does that mean for the party and for the country? you will see where the conservative party is on sunday night and it is no secret to anyone, it is going to be devastating. and the problem for any new leader is that if they are to have a prospect of making progress and winning a general election, they have to unite the party. the temptation will be for the debate to be how close do we get to nigel farage. the truth is, the closer they get to him, the more the closer they get to him, the more the haemorrhage to the centre of politics will compensate for that. and so, trying to outdo him is a
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very dangerous position. there are 5 million conservatives who voted to remain. and they in very large measure will have moved to the lib dems over the course of this european elections or two other splinter parties. and they are not coming back. if there is a position ofa coming back. if there is a position of a conservative leader trying to pretend to be a mini nigel farage. that is the danger. and if you add to that, in the 18—25 —year—old age group, the now command 5% of the support of that future generation. you realise how deep problem is. that was lord heseltine predicting turbulent times ahead. theresa may‘s departure has fired the starting gun on the race to replace her as
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conservative leader and the country‘s primary step. the initial jostling behind—the—scenes is now out in the open. the job of picking the next prime minister is in the hands of tory mps and conservative party members. a contest that has already been brewing for weeks will kick off officially on friday, june the 7th, the date to reason they will stand down as tory leader. nominations begin the following week. under the party‘s rules, conservative mps will whittle down the field of candidates through a series of votes until a final two remain. and those two candidates will then battle it out to win a vote of the tory grassroots — around 120,000 conservative party members, who are largely male, middle—class and have an average age of 57. so, who might stand? well, it‘s likely to be a very crowded field. around 17 tory mps are considering a crack at number ten, and five have said that they‘ll definitely run, including borisjohnson. the 54—year—old former foreign secretary is the likely frontrunner. the figurehead of the leave campaign
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is popular among the membership but less admired by a chunk of tory mps who may try and thwart his path to number ten. another leave believer, dominic raab, is also likely to run, and the former brexit secretary is popular on the right of the party. there is the environment secretary, michael gove, who backed leave but has stayed loyal to mrs may. the foreign secretary, jeremy hunt, is going for it. he campaigned for remain in the referendum but has since stressed his commitment to brexit, as has the home secretary, sajid javid. the leave supporter and former work and pensions secretary esther mcvey says she is definitely running. and andrea leadsom, who stood against theresa may last time before pulling out, may also try again. there will be more, many more, who go for it. a new prime minister will be in place by the time parliament breaks up for the summer recess in latejuly. but whoever goes through this door in a few weeks‘ time will face the same challenges that mrs may will soon leave behind —

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