What says ‘Theresa May’ more than a comic speech at a boozy dinner for a room full of journalists? That was the question the Prime Minister found herself asking a room of well hydrated hacks at last night’s Westminster Correspondents Dinner.
May took a break from the Irish border to regale journalists with a speech poking fun at her former colleagues, current colleagues, the lobby and … Theresa May. To some surprise, May cracked several – successful jokes. She even found time to praise the Spectator’s James Forsyth. Alas, not everyone was in such a jolly mood – Labour’s Barry Gardiner was overhead muttering warnings to the press about what will happen to them (spoiler: not good) come PM Corbyn.
Here is May’s speech in full:
Thank you very much for that introduction, Matt (Chorley). Matt is one of my biggest cheerleaders on Fleet Street. Every PM needs one.
An influential commentator who can lend a sympathetic ear and give a voice to your cause. Macmillan had Bill Deedes. Thatcher had Woodrow Wyatt. And I have Matt Chorley.
So devoted is he to my interests, he gets up at 5.30 each morning to pen a Theresa May fan sheet he calls ‘Red Box’. Recent glowing reviews of my work have included: The extravagantly complimentary: ‘We must surely assume that Theresa May has a skill.’