BORIS Johnson has today vowed to “give Britain its mojo back” so we can “stand tall” as his whirlwind first 100 days in office began.
Speaking in Tony Blair’s old constituency – seized from Labour in the election as the Tories smashed through the ‘Red Wall’ in the North – the Prime Minister said he would take the country on a “wonderful adventure”.
Boris is on a victory lap of the North today as he thanked voters in Labour’s heartland who turned staunch red seats blue – many for the first time in their history.
Speaking in Sedgefield – one of the 27 to succumb to the blue wave – Mr Johnson jubilantly ticked off the constituencies the Tories had won over.
The significance of the Tory leader standing in Blair’s old seat after presiding over a majority not seen since New Labour will resound with shockwaves across the country.
“We are going to recover our national self confidence – our mojo,” he told supporters at the town’s cricket club.
The Prime Minister secured a sweeping 80-seat majority on Thursday – meaning the UK is now on track to leave the EU in less than two months.
Today Mr Johnson promised to deliver his slogan to “get Brexit done” – and also pledged “better infrastructure, better education and fantastic modern technology”.
“We’ve embarked on a wonderful adventure,” he said. “We’re going to do things differently and better.”
Boris has repeatedly pledged to prioritise Brexit, tax cuts and protecting the NHS in his first 100 days in office.
In a victory speech on Friday, the PM emphasised that he had an “overwhelming mandate” to take Britain out of the EU by the end of January and deliver on his pledge to “get Brexit done”.
Mr Johnson called for unity in the country, urging “everyone to find closure and to let the healing begin” after more than three years of division.
But he also recognised that there were concerns away from Brexit and, in a possible nod towards Labour voter concerns, confirmed he would prioritise the NHS.
Johnson has already guaranteed an extra 33.9bn a year to the NHS by 2023 – one of his ten key election pledges.
“I believe – in fact, I know because I heard it loud and clear from every corner of the country – that the overwhelming priority of the British people now is that we should focus, above all, on the NHS, that beautiful idea that represents the best of our country,” he said.
Not everyone was convinced, with protests against Mr Johnson turning angry in Westminster on Friday evening.
Demonstrators carried placards bearing the slogans “Defy Tory Rule” and chanted “Oh, Jeremy Corbyn”. Two people were arrested.
Setting out his first plans for Government, the PM is expected to reintroduce his Brexit deal in the Commons next week following the Queen’s Speech and State Opening of Parliament on Thursday.
He has already started work on picking up relations with key European leaders, speaking by phone with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Irish Taoiseach Leo Varadkar.
With all 650 results declared, the Conservatives had 365 seats after the election – a net gain of 67 compared to the state of the parties at the dissolution of Parliament in November.
Labour were on 203, a net loss of 42, the SNP on 48, a gain of 13, and the Liberal Democrats on 11, a loss of 10.
LABOUR IN CHAOS
The result plunged Labour into turmoil, with humiliated leader Jeremy Corbyn announcing he would not take the party into the next General Election after seeing a string of former strongholds fall to the Tories.
But he faced furious demands to quit immediately after he said he intended to lead the party through a “process of reflection” as it considered the way forward.
Positioning in the race to replace Mr Corbyn has already started, with ardent Remainer David Lammy confirming he was considering putting his name forward.
Others being touted to take over include Lisa Nandy, who represents Leave-voting Wigan, Rebecca Long-Bailey, Angela Rayner, Sir Keir Starmer, Jess Phillips and Emily Thornberry.
The outcome also put Mr Johnson on a collision course with SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon after she used the landslide result north of the border to demand the right to hold a fresh referendum on Scottish independence.
A dramatic election night saw Liberal Democrat leader Jo Swinson stepping down after losing her Dunbartonshire East seat to the SNP, while DUP deputy leader Nigel Dodds was ousted by Sinn Fein in North Belfast.
In her farewell speech in central London, Ms Swinson name-checked several re-elected female MPs , including education spokeswoman Layla Moran and home affairs spokeswoman Christine Jardine, who had the “experience” to succeed her.