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Campaign highlights: Lib Dems say anything is possible, even Jo Swinson as PM

General Election 2019 | Published: | Last Updated:

Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced a plan to create 50 million more appointments in GP surgeries every year.

Jo Swinson

The Liberal Democrats believe it is “entirely possible” party leader Jo Swinson could be the next prime minister.

Education spokeswoman Layla Moran said “something weird” is happening in British politics which means “anything is possible” – including there being a Lib Dem PM.

Meanwhile, former home secretary Lord Blunkett has cast doubt over Labour’s chances of winning the election, and said “anti-Semitism” and “thuggery” in the party makes him “despair”.

Here are some of the highlights of Saturday’s campaign trail:

– Labour’s chances of winning are “extraordinarily slim”, according to a former home secretary

David Blunkett, who served as a Labour MP for 28 years and now sits in the Lords, said the likelihood of Jeremy Corbyn securing a majority on December 12 is “extraordinarily slim”.

He also said “anti-Semitism” and “thuggery” in the party makes him “despair”, but urged moderates to “stay and fight” to ensure the “voice of reason” prevails.

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– The Tories have pledged millions more GP appointments

Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced a plan to create 50 million more appointments in GP surgeries every year under a Conservative majority government.

He said the extra appointments would be made possible by the delivery of 6,000 more doctors and 6,000 additional nurses, physiotherapists and pharmacists.

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– The Liberal Democrats believe it is “entirely possible” Jo Swinson could be the next PM

General Election 2019
Layla Moran speaking at a Liberal Democrat rally at the Battersea Arts Centre in Lavender Hill in London (Aaron Chown/PA)

The party’s education spokeswoman Layla Moran said “something weird” is happening in British politics which means “anything is possible” – including a Lib Dem PM.

She admitted it is a “stretch target”, but said: “For once I actually genuinely think that it is possible.”

– Childcare policies will be a key battleground

Labour has announced plans to provide 30 hours per week of free care to all children aged between two and four, which it believes could save parents as much as £5,000 per year.

But under Lib Dem plans, working parents could receive 35 hours of free childcare per week when their baby reaches nine months.

– Michael Gove owes Matt Hancock a bottle of wine

Brexit
Matt Hancock is awaiting his prize from Michael Gove (Stefan Rousseau/PA)

The Cabinet ministers had a bet on the degree of support MPs would provide to the Prime Minister’s Brexit deal when it came before the Commons.

Mr Gove said a vote on the principle of the deal would clear the Commons by three votes, but Mr Hancock said the figure would be higher, he told Sky.

In the end, the deal secured a majority of 30 at second reading and Mr Hancock said he is now awaiting the prize – a bottle of wine – from Mr Gove.

Tweet of the day

Baroness Warsi accused Health Secretary Matt Hancock of “whitesplaining” after he said others in the party “take a more balanced approach” on Islamophobia than her.

It comes after Boris Johnson said the Conservatives would be conducting a “general investigation into prejudice” – stopping short of calls for an independent inquiry.

Picture of the day

Jeremy Corbyn and Angela Rayner got creative on a visit to an arts project in Leeds.

General Election 2019
Jeremy Corbyn and Angela Rayner visit the Scrap Creative Reuse Arts Project in Farsley, Leeds (Nigel Roddis/PA)

Video of the day

What’s next?



  • The three main party leaders are expected to break away from the election campaign trail as they pay their respects on Remembrance Sunday

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