‘Delusional’: Tensions rise ahead of Tory conference

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Anna Soubry

AFTER Liam Fox gave a strong pro-globalisation speech extolling his vision of a ‘freer free trade’ enjoyed by a post-Brexit Britain, a senior Tory has lambasted the Secretary of State for International Trade as “delusional” as the party prepares to hold its annual conference.

Anna Soubry, a former business minister, described new leader Theresa May as a “voice of sanity” but said it was “really worrying” that men of Fox’s ilk have the future of the country in their hands.

Liam Fox’s speech this week was very worrying; in fact, it was delusional,” she told the Guardian. “How can we have ‘freer’ free trade? Let’s get real, for God’s sake. It’s really worrying that these are the senior people who have the future of our country in their hands. May is the voice of sanity, and without her I don’t know where the three Brexiteers would take us,” referring to Fox’s cohorts Boris Johnson and David Davis.

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The acrimony foreshadows the Conservative party conference which gets underway on Sunday October 2. Theresa May is under heavy pressure to set a date for the triggering of Article 50 which will set the ball rolling on Brexit negotiations. Members are also expecting more clarity on what kind of Brexit her administration envisions, growing wearing of the catchphrase “Brexit means Brexit” and demanding concrete details.

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