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Despite Their Rhetoric We Won't Let the Tories Escape Reality

11/10/2015 11:55 BST | Updated 10/10/2016 10:12 BST

David Cameron may have used his Conference speech this week to try and redefine his leadership but it's clear that in the minds of many of his cabinet colleagues his time as leader is all but over.

The Prime Minister's confirmation that he'll quit before the next General Election gave the signal those with leadership ambitions needed to start measuring up the curtains. We can expect more of this in the weeks and months ahead. You might have thought Labour's five month leadership race was long. Well the Tories are about to have one lasting five years.

It's hard to keep up with who wants to be the next Tory leader. We've long known of the ambitions of Boris Johnson, George Osborne and Theresa May but Tory Conference saw even Jeremy Hunt and Nicky Morgan trying to throw their hats into the ring.

The ins and outs of the next Tory leadership battle along with the inevitable ructions over the referendum in Europe might be fun for Westminster obsessives, sadly for the rest of us we'll see an inward looking Conservative Party, more concerned with internal politicking than the big challenges facing the country.

We heard big boasts from David Cameron about the 'common ground' of British politics but we heard little in his speech about the big tax credit cuts set to hit working people. For all his talk this week of an "all-out assault on poverty", David Cameron's Government is set to push 200,000 children into poverty as a result of these tax credit cuts. There were warm words on the NHS but no recognition of the latest financial figures from NHS Trusts showing that with a difficult winter approaching hospitals are facing a stark choice between balancing the books and delivering safe care.

As Jeremy Corbyn outlined on Friday, despite what fake claims are made by Tory ministers, the truth is millions of working families are set to lose £1,300 next year, 200,000 children next year will be driven into poverty, our NHS is facing a funding crisis, and families across the country are struggling to get on the housing ladder. Meanwhile the Tories are too busy thinking about life after Cameron.

The Tories are attempting to steal progressive rhetoric but they can't escape the reality of their policies. Jeremy Corbyn's Labour Party will hold the Tories to account, stand up for the many and oppose their unfair cuts to tax credits. The only party of the common ground in British politics is the party that will truly stand up for working people. That's the Labour Party.

Jon Ashworth is the Labour MP for Leicester South and shadow minister without portfolio