Ann Widdecombe: 'There is no Conservative Party... it is gone'

Former politician Ann Widdecombe has claimed the Conservative Party is “gone” as the Tories have moved too far to the left.

Ms Widdecombe, ex-Minister for Employment, argued that Conservative policies and politicians have moved too far left and that it is no longer the “law and order party” it once was.

TalkTV's Mike Graham suggested the Party had moved to the "centre right", to which Ms Widdecombe scoffed and said: "centre left more likely!"

She continued: “There is no Conservative Party, there is no party that believes in lowering taxation, that believes in encouraging the enterprise of the individuals, there is no such party, it's gone.

“It will take a long time to get back to the very raison d'etre of the Conservative Party, which was a law and order party, which certainly isn't now.

“It was low taxes, strict control of spendings but control of the public finances, now it is just not that.”

Ms Widdecombe also commented on current Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and Labour leader Keir Starmer.

She argued: “I tell you exactly what he (Rishi Sunak) is able to do, he's able to talk, which is all he ever does.

“He says 'we're going to stop the small boats, immigration is one of the most important things'... he talks but he doesn't do.”

With the next general election coming no later than January 2025, Ms Widdecombe argued the Tories must be more prepared for stiff competition from the Labour party.

The Prime Minister’s official spokesman has said that Mr Sunak could point to a number of achievements, including securing the Windsor Framework deal with the EU and making headway in halving inflation, to retain power.

However, Ms Widdecombe said: “What Keir Starmer has done recently is something that I think is very, very clever, and dangerous.

“He's taken a leaf out of Tony Blair’s book and he's announced that they're not actually going to tax the wealthy, they're not going to have a property tax, they're not going to raise the top rate etc.

“It's reassuring people and big business, it reassures successful people, it reassures middle income earners. Labour isn't going to be worse than the Conservatives when it comes to caps.

“Labour are standing in good stead in the general election and that means the Tories should be far more rattled than they are.”