Andrew Marr: Tories and Labour warm up for the next general election

3 May 2022, 18:09

By Emma Soteriou

The Tories and Labour are using the upcoming local elections as a practice round for the next general election, Andrew Marr has said.

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Speaking on LBC's Tonight with Andrew Marr, he said: "Just as Labour has quite successfully painted Johnson as heedless, deceitful, sloppy, selfish and out of touch, Conservatives are now painting Starmer not just as Captain Hindsight, but as shifty pious and hypocritical.

"Electoral politics, see. Both sides are trying out lines they may use in the next general election."

It came after he opened the show reflecting on a quiet week for parliamentary politics, with electoral politics instead taking over.

Andrew continued: "This is a week when there's no parliamentary politics. MPs are away. There's a somnolent, dozy air about the place.

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"Around the coffee shops and restaurants, only a few bored hacks, yawning security staff and under-employed researchers are still hanging around.

"In the Lords, stacks of plywood, dusty plastic and carpeting are piled up, waiting to be transformed into makeshift galleries for the State opening a week today.

"Meanwhile, electoral politics have elbowed aside parliamentary politics. The two are similar but not identical - instead of the plotting, whispering, and stagy confrontations across the floor of the commons, we get a welcome focus on actual voters and a coarser, more aggressive framing of political differences.

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"Today's unpredicted star was Elsie, a 77-year-old reduced to one meal a day. In a GMB interview with the Prime Minister he was unable to explain how Elsie could make savings or pay her bills.

"It highlighted one of the biggest issues in these local elections -  inflation and the cost of living crisis.

"Later on, I'll be talking to the interviewer who so expertly skewered Boris Johnson, Susanna Reid.

"But the other big story in politics today is so-called "beer gate"... Whether the Labour leader Keir Starmer broke the lockdown rules by having a beer and curry with Labour staffers in Durham - and whether he's also now being investigated by the police.

"This is important in how the two sides are framing their opponents."