Starmer turns to Labour, and says Labour must never again go into an election with “a manifesto that is not a serious plan for government”.
He does not mention Jeremy Corbyn by name, but this passage is a direct attack on Corbyn’s leadership.
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This is our first full conference since the 2019 General Election in which we suffered our worst defeat since 1935.
To our devoted activists and loyal voters I want to say loud and clear. You saved this party from obliteration and we will never forget it. Thank you.
But my job as leader is not just to say thank you to the voters who stayed with us. It is to understand and persuade the voters who rejected us.
To those Labour voters who said their grandparents would turn in their graves, that they couldn’t trust us with high office, to those who reluctantly chose the Tories because they didn’t believe our promises were credible.
To the voters who thought we were unpatriotic or irresponsible or that we looked down on them, I say these simple but powerful words. We will never under my leadership go into an election with a manifesto that is not a serious plan for government.
There is some heckling. Starmer says at this time on a Wednesday it is normally the Tories heckling him. He is not bothered, he says.
Starmer quotes the PM at the UN.
Let me quote what the prime minister said to the United Nations last week: “We believe that someone else will clear up the mess we make because that is what someone else has always done.”
This line may have been inspired by this Marina Hyde column.
Starmer turns to the fuel crisis, and his first line is a zinger.
If you go outside and walk along the seafront, it won’t be long before you come to a petrol station which has no fuel. Level up? You can’t even fill up.
He goes on to explain why the government is responsible.
Doesn’t that just tell you everything about this government? Ignoring the problem, blaming someone else, then coming up with a half-baked solution.
Why do we suddenly have a shortage of HGV drivers? Why is there no plan in place?
A tank of fuel already costs £10 more than it did at the start of the year. Gas and electricity bills up. Gaps on the supermarket shelves.
And he says the UK has “a fuel crisis, a pay crisis, a goods crisis and a cost of living crisis – all at the same time”
Rent up, especially for those on the lowest incomes. Yet at this very moment, the government is putting up tax on working people. Putting up tax on small businesses and slashing universal credit.
We have a fuel crisis, a pay crisis, a goods crisis and a cost of living crisis – all at the same time.
Starmer thanks his shadow cabinet colleagues, and tells Louise Ellman “welcome home”.
He says it has not been an easy conference, and he starts with a joke.
Sunday was particularly nerve-wracking, but then the results came through: Arsenal 3-1 Tottenham.
Starmer says he has waited 17 months, 25 days and two hours to appear before them in this hall as leader of the party.
He thanks Doreen Lawrence for all she has done for justice, and for the party.
Sir Keir Starmer is on the stage now. He gets a standing ovation before he starts.
They are playing Right Here, Right Now, by Fatboy Slim.
A video is now being played, showing Starmer in different settings. It’s all music so far, no words yet.
Doreen Lawrence is speaking in the hall now, introducing Sir Keir Starmer.
She says she first met him about 15 years ago. He took the decision to prosecute the murderers of her son, Stephen. She says she has met a lot of people who talk a lot, but Starmer is someone who listens and acts.
She says he is a friend. He asked her to be his race adviser and compile a report on race and Covid. She says when he read her conclusions, he said that as PM he would act on them. That is the sort of person he is.
This is from my colleague Heather Stewart, who is in the hall for the speech.
Keir Starmer has prepared a response to potential heckling, the BBC’s Laura Kuenssberg reports.
Andy McDonald, who resigned from the shadow cabinet this week over Sir Keir Starmer’s failure to support a £15-an-hour minimum wage, has used an article for the Guardian to argue that Starmer was mistaken last night when he said winning was more important than unity. McDonald says Starmer should copy Joe Biden and work with the left. He says:
Starmer’s team have briefed that today’s conference speech will convey the message that “winning is more important than unity”, but one only need to look at the party’s polling and the leader’s approval ratings to recognise that pursuing a path based on breaking promises and needlessly dividing a party is only making a Labour victory less likely.
Rather than looking back into the past to Neil Kinnock, the leader and his team should look across the Atlantic to Joe Biden, who recognised that the Democrats’ route to power involved working with the left and the trade union movement. It’s not too late for Keir to learn this lesson and do the same, but I fear time is quickly running out.
McDonald’s article in full is here.