Priti Patel says Tory ‘mood is dark’ ahead of local polls

Priti Patel
Priti Patel

FORMER international development secretary Priti Patel said yesterday (28) the public is frustrated and betrayed by Britain’s failure to leave the EU on March 29.

“I think without a doubt that frustration is there,” Patel told BBC’s Westminster Hour. “I have heard it myself. I’ve experienced it both with my council candidates and when I’ve been on the doorstep …the mood is dark. The public are frustrated.

“They are fed up I think more widely with politics and the way in which Brexit has been handled and in particular the fact that, as many people say to me in my constituency, they expected us to leave effectively on March 29. This has not happened.”

According to election expert Rob Hayward, the Conservatives are expected to lose more than 800 council seats of the 4,628 seats the party is defending, if voters decide to stay home to protest the failure to leave the EU.

Meanwhile, former foreign secretary Boris Johnson today (29) begged voters to refrain from punishing the Tories over Brexit.

He has urged people going to the polls on Thursday to back “hard-working Tory councillors” despite their anger over “our current dismal failure to leave the EU.”

“I think [the voters] know how much good they do and how much we all rely on them,” he said.

“So much depends on their efficiency and responsiveness and capacity of those councillors. They can make all the difference for many families between misery and contentment.

“That is why it matters so much who we elect on Thursday – and that is why I hope people will vote for the councils that deliver the best services for the best value; and that means the Conservatives.”