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Conor Burns leads opposition to statue of Tony Blair being erected alongside Thatcher and Churchill

Tim Montgomerie

6a00d83451b31c69e201348702868b970c-200wi According to the Mail on Sunday, Conservative MP Conor Burns is leading the opposition to a plan by a Labour MP to erect a statue in the Members' Lobby of the House of Commons, alongside Winston Churchill and Lady Thatcher:

"It is preposterous to say that Mr Blair deserves the same recognition as Lady Thatcher. Margaret Thatcher led a Government that rescued Britain from near economic collapse inflicted by socialism, faced down the clothcap colonels of the unions and bestrode the world stage as a colossus who put the “Great” back into Great Britain. Tony Blair allowed that legacy to be squandered and bequeathed a Britain more bankrupt than in 1979. With the fires of his foreign adventures yet to be extinguished, it would be a better debate as to whether he should be placed inside the plinth rather than on top of it."

Labour MP Thomas Docherty is undeterred, however:

"Apart from being the first ever Labour leader to win three consecutive Elections, he played a crucial role in bringing peace to Northern Ireland, devolved power to  Scotland and Wales and kicked most of the hereditary peers out of the Lords."

An opinion poll in September of last year found 21% of Britons agreeing that Tony Blair was the best PM of the post-war period. 35% thought the same of Margaret Thatcher.