Tony Blair

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Last quote by Tony Blair

My election has shown people that there are a lot of shy Tories in the North East. It has become a lot more acceptable for people to be open voting Tory.feedback
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May 20 2017
We can learn a lot about a person if we know what types of things he or she talks about or comments on the most frequently. There are numerous topics with which Tony Blair is associated, including Saddam Hussein and Iraq. Most recently, Tony Blair has been quoted saying: “He was great company, a fund of marvellous stories and a shrewd and immensely capable politician. We spent many times together in opposition and in Government.” in the article Tributes paid to former Welsh leader and 'father of nation'.
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Tony Blair quotes

It is not frontline politics in the sense I am not standing for parliament. I am not sure I can turn something into a political movement but I think there is a body of ideas out there people would support. Okay, at the end of 10 years of my time as PM there were things people really objected to; Iraq obviously, and post-9/11 foreign policy. But don't take that away from the achievements of that government – huge investment in the health service and schools, we reduced pensioner poverty and child poverty, we introduced the minimum wage. We did a lot.feedback

A lot of the attacks on me are because I am the representative of that type of centre left politics. People on the right are desperate never to have my politics come back to the Labour Party because they know it can end in a Tory defeat. And then unfortunately it has always been the way of the left that it tends to attack its own.feedback

If the polls are right, she is going to win a big majority. If they're right, then that's what's going to happen. The important thing is what's the mandate. That's what we've got to concentrate upon.feedback

You've aged better than me. What I did in respect of Labour, I look back on with pride. There was a different atmosphere. We became a much more modern and progressive country. I'm not getting into issues of leadership.feedback

I personally think that when people see the details, they will hesitate. They're collapsing the UKIP vote into them, and they're going after the Leave vote from Labour. Now that doesn't strike me as a strategy designed to give you an easier ride on Brexit. All I say to you is it was 52 percent to 48 percent. Anything that looks like a form of conservatism of the left is never going to work, because the progressive forces only win when they understand the future and show how they can make it work for people.feedback

The chief characteristic of the world is accelerating change, and for the left it has got to be constantly modernizing. It is in everyone's interest that this is a presidency that is a force for stability and not instability. I think you can see in some of the positions adopted, there is somewhat of a shift from the candidate to the president.feedback

What I'm advocating may mean that. It may mean voting Labour. It may mean, by the way, that they vote Tory, for candidates who are prepared to give this commitment.feedback

Ignoring the Brexit issue or trying to downplay it as one issue out of many just won't work … we have to expose the fact that the mandate the Tories are asking for is not an open negotiation in the interests of the country but for a Brexit at any cost driven by the ideology of the right of the Tory party.feedback

Yet if this is seen as a narrow Labour point, it will be much less persuasive. Hence the absolute necessity, in the Labour interest, of rallying people to a more reasonable and open position on Brexit across the party divide.feedback

Labour’s only chance lies in convincing voters that it will hold the government to account on any deal with the EU. There is a unique element to this election as a result of Brexit. The Tories believe this is to their advantage. But it could be turned against them.feedback

What I'm advocating may mean that, it may mean Labour, it may mean people vote Tory. In every constituency if you care about this issue we are going to provide a sufficient amount of pressure that candidates are forced to say where they stand on this issue. I feel we are just allowing ourselves to be hijacked by what is actually a small group of people. Theresa May is very, solid, she's a decent person. I agree with a lot of what she says. But on this issue she is not reasonable. [Do you fancy going back into politics?] I've been over 30 years in politics. I've never known polls like this.feedback

This is something that's bigger than party allegiance, in this particular election.feedback

Because I've said I'm not going to get into the discussion of the campaign, I'm not even going to get into that discussion.feedback

I look at the political scene at the moment and I almost feel motivated to go right back into it. The absolutely central question at this general election is less who is the prime minister on 9 June, and more what is the nature of the mandate, and in particular – because otherwise frankly this is a steamroller election – is it possible that we can return as many members of parliament as possible to parliament that are going to keep an open mind on this Brexit negotiation until we see the final terms.feedback

What I'm advocating may mean that. It may mean voting Labour. It may mean, by the way, that they vote Tory, for candidates who are prepared to give this commitment. Will you back Brexit at any costs, or are you prepared to say, this deal is not in the interests of the country? You look at her and she's very sensible, she's a very decent person, she's very solid, I agree with a lot she says. What she says about energy prices today, a lot of people would say, yes, fair enough. On this issue, she's not reasonable.feedback

I will vote Labour, I would always vote Labour, and there are many excellent Labour candidates throughout the country. But that's not the point for me. The point for me is, whether I'm Labour or I'm not Labour, even if there's Conservatives or Liberal Democrats, I'll work with anyone to get this argument across in the country.feedback

They will say they don't represent the will of the people. We do, many millions of them and – with determination – many millions more.feedback

The political situation the country faces is unprecedented and dangerous. We risk a Parliament which is lop-sided in its make-up; which has a big Tory majority - in part delivered not because of the intrinsic merits of Brexit or the Tories themselves but because of the state of Labour; where they will claim a mandate to take us wherever they will; when we desperately need representatives who will at least keep an open mind.feedback

This requires the electorate in every constituency to know where the candidates stand; and the mobilisation of the thousands in each constituency to make it clear that for them this issue counts when it comes to their vote. The one incontrovertible characteristic of politics today is its propensity for revolt. The Brexiteers were the beneficiaries of this wave, but now they want to freeze it to a date in June 2016. They will say the will of the people can't alter. It can. They will say that leaving is inevitable. It isn't.feedback

The damage to the country will be huge if we end up with an unrestrained 'Brexit at any cost' majority. The state of the Labour leadership offers such an obvious target that it would be an extraordinary act of political self-denial to refuse to put the opposition to the test. I am delighted that the prime minister has decided to ask the parliament to go to the country in pursuit of a mandate for the plans she has set out for leaving the European Union. This should be great news for a strong and stable government, a strong negotiating hand and a good deal.feedback

Labour are going to decide if they want a real Brexit or a fake one. A fake Brexit is staying in the customs unions or EEA, unable to chart our own course on trade policy and services regulation.feedback

Ask yourself one simple question. In the prime minister's office, in Tory high command, how much of their time do they spend worrying about the prospect of a Labour victory at the present time? I would guess zero. We have to say, the government's got a mandate to negotiate Brexit, but we're going to hold them to account that it's not going to damage jobs, that it's not going to damage the economy. I hate to say that, but it is true. What this means is that we have to build a movement which stretches across party lines, and devise new ways of communication.feedback

Urgency – because politics moves faster today and Brexit ... it's the defining moment in British history.feedback

The people voted without knowledge of the true terms of Brexit. As these terms become clear, it is their right to change their mind. Our mission is to persuade them to do so. They're not driving this bus –they're being driven. We will trigger article 50 not because we now know our destination, but because the politics of not doing so would alienate those driving the bus. The surreal nature of the exercise is enhanced by the curious absence of a big argument as to why this continues to be a good idea.feedback

We could never have done it without Martin's leadership, courage and quiet insistence that the past should not define the future.feedback

Immense gratitude for the part he played in the peace process. Whatever the past, the Martin I knew was a thoughtful, reflective and committed individual. Once he became the peacemaker he became it wholeheartedly and with no shortage of determined opposition to those who wanted to carry on the war.feedback

People are reminded not of things are today but how they used to be... when people are looking back on his life they are also drawing from it some inspiration to keep the future peaceful and to remove those vestiges of sectarianism that are also there.feedback

I didn't understand how complicated this is going to be. If they're going to try and deliver exactly the same benefits as we have now in the single market and customs union, this is an endeavour of unparalleled complexity. People start to think is this really going to be the thing that is going to be important. And then when you look at Scotland you see another strain on the constitution of the country as a result.feedback

My view is very simply I agree at the moment the argument for many people is over. But if, as you go down this path, the British people realise three things that I think it could change.feedback

I don't know if having both of those jobs is doable, but it's a great thing for the Evening Standard. Why not? He's a highly capable guy and it'll make politics more interesting.feedback

No we didn't know the numbers. But by the way it's very important to realise two things. When these countries joined the EU, [it was] very important for us that they did join the EU - important for our security, important for our economy. There was freedom of movement of people immediately. We could have delayed for four years their ability to come here and work. We didn't, it's true, the economy was in a completely different position in 2004. But I just point out the majority of EU immigration came post-2008.feedback

One of the tragedies of Brexit is we're now in a situation where where we think this enlargement of the EU, like the single market, was some sort of error. It was actually a bi-partisan policy of both governments that has done great benefit to this country.feedback

Labour has got to build out from the remain vote and reach out to those that are persuadable in the leave camp. It would be a fundamental strategic error to end up trying to go to the leave camp, and then trying to build out across the other way. Then you will end up not persuading the leave people, and alienating the remain people.feedback

An indifference to liberal democracy is starting to form in parts of Europe. There are very worrying trends including as many as a third of young people in France saying they doubt democracy is the best form of government. Even where populism does not win, as in Holland, it influences and distorts debate. Populism identifies an enemy as the answer to what are essentially the problems of accelerated change.feedback

The arguments for the union are very strong, but be in no doubt, I give this very strong warning, there are elements of the Conservative party and elements of the rightwing media that are perfectly happy with the break-up of the UK.feedback

The position is retrievable, but only if we change. This is not about the personality of the leader. In my view, we are in fundamentally the wrong political position. If you stick to that position, even if you change the leader, you will not have a different result.feedback

Increasingly the hard right ideologues who are really driving this are going to push us towards the position of: 'You know what? No deal is really fine'. At various points over the past 20-30 years sometimes it has seemed disloyal to talk about the Labour party being in bad shape but when it is in the situation it is today – seven years into a Tory government and losing safe Labour seats to the Conservatives – if you want your analysis of politics to retain any credibility, you have got to say the position is serious.feedback

The debilitation of the Labour party is the facilitator of Brexit.feedback

The fact is that this was always a very difficult situation where any government would have to balance proper concern for civil liberties with desire to protect our security, and we were likely to be attacked whatever course we took.feedback

Yes, the British people voted to leave Europe and I agree the will of the people should prevail. I accept right now there is no widespread appetite to rethink. But the people voted without knowledge of the terms of Brexit. As these terms become clear, it is their right to change their mind. Our mission is to persuade them to do so.feedback

The road we're going down is not simply Hard Brexit, it is Brexit at any cost.feedback

The people voted without knowledge of the terms of Brexit. As these terms become clear, it is their right to change their mind. Our mission is to persuade them to do so. This is not the time for retreat, indifference or despair, but the time to rise up in defense of what we believe. They're not driving this bus. They're being driven. You can like the messenger or not like the messenger, and this is a free country and I've got a right to speak. I know that there will be a volley of abuse that will come my way for speaking.feedback

It does feel perilous, actually, because I think there are decisions that are being taken of vast moment in circumstances where systems are fragile. And that is troubling.feedback

I'm not sure we're asking the right questions right now, never mind giving the right answers.feedback

There is, I think, a whole group of people who feel ignored by those in power, that is for sure true. There is more anger around in politics than for a long time.feedback

We need to reflect very seriously before we take any decisions again to take military action without realising the consequences of those will live with all of us for many decades to come and have often incalculable consequences as a result.feedback

I've said many times over these past years, I'll wait for the report and then I will make my views known and express myself fully and properly.feedback

The threat from Saddam Hussein and weapons of mass destruction, chemical, biological, potentially nuclear weapon's capability, that threat is real. So the purpose of our discussion today is to work out the right strategy for dealing with this. Because deal we must.feedback

It concludes Iraq has chemical and biological weapons, that Saddam continued to produce them, that he has existing and active military plans for the use of chemical and biological weapons which could be activated within 45 minutes.feedback

It is claimed by some that by removing Saddam we caused the terrorism in the Middle East and that it would have been better to have left him in power. I profoundly disagree.feedback

The decision to go to war in Iraq and to remove Saddam Hussein from power in a coalition of over 40 countries led by the United State of America was the hardest, most momentous, most agonizing decision I took in my 10 years as British Prime Minister. For that decision today, I accept full responsibility, without exception and without excuse.feedback

I think the way she has just step by step, without losing the dignity of the monarchy, modernized it and you look at, you know, her grandchildren today and you think, these – Prince William and Prince Harry, I mean, they – for two young people put in that position, I mean it's pretty impressive, really the way they've managed to handle it.feedback

When I grew up in politics, I hated hypocrisy pushing people to conceal their identity. And I saw the pain they felt because they could not be who they are.feedback

I would like to dedicate this award to the people that work with and for my organisations. I feel the pulse of progress beating a little harder.feedback

The only way we're going to get an agreement to a transition, to a new form of government, a new dispensation for the country, is if neither side feels they can win the military battle and therefore realise that they are going to have to resolve it through negotiation. But over these past six to nine months I think the situation on the ground has shifted back towards the regime.feedback

I don't frankly think the issue is whether Iran's invited or not invited. The issue is, as I said, that we alter the balance of power on the ground so that President Assad knows that he's got to come to an agreement about the transition.feedback

For us in the West, what we've got to ask ourselves is how do we put the opposition in a position where they are going to be bargaining on equal terms? Now, the complicating factor of course is the opposition has also got elements within it that we feel deeply unhappy about.feedback

Very few leaders get to change not only the political landscape of the country but of the world. Margaret was such a leader. Her global impact was vast.feedback

How can you regret removing a monster who created enormous carnage?feedback

The short term thing that needs to happen is that all of it is de-escalated back down and that means that the rockets stop because if the rockets carry on, the Israeli airstrikes will carry on and what happens, as we've seen, is that in that there will be innocent Israeli civilians killed and innocent Palestinian civilians killed.feedback

Am I saying he's not a powerful figure in the media? Well no, of course he is, and, of course you're aware of what his views are, and that's why I say part of my job was to manage the situation so that you didn't get into a situation where you were shifting policy.feedback

No, no I'm joking. I am staying with my political family. I would be a socialist, but on the side of those who have change close to their hearts.feedback

But whether that sense of possibility can be translated into something – that is something that needs to be worked at and thought about over time.feedback

We need to get this result and I hope very much it can be done, but the 4 areas we set down we do need satisfied and we do need satisfied in full.feedback

You have been a strong leader at a time when the world needed strong leadership, you have been unyielding and unflinching and determined in the fight we faced together and I thank you for that.feedback

I may have been wrong. That's your call. But believe one thing if nothing else. I did what I thought was right for our country, and I came into office with high hopes for Britain's future – and you know, I leave it with even higher hopes for Britain's future. This is a country that can today be excited by the opportunities, not constantly fretful of the dangers. And people say to me: It's a tough job. Not really. A tough life is the life led by the young severely disabled children and their parents who visited me in Parliament the other week.feedback

There are elements at least of the Iranian regime that are backing, financing, arming, and supporting terrorism in Iraq. I repeat that our forces are there specifically at the request of the Iraqi government, with the full authority of the UN.feedback

To the Iranian people I would simply say this, we bare you no ill will. On the contrary, we respect Iran as an ancient civilisation, as a nation with a proud and dignified history. And the disagreements we have with your government we wish to resolve peacefully through dialogue.feedback

One is to try to settle this by way of peaceful and calm negotiation, to get our people back as quickly as possible. The other is to make it clear that if that is not possible then we might have to take a tougher position.feedback

People understand that this is a very clear situation. What I am trying to get across to the Iranian government is that there is no alternative but to release them and the longer it goes on, the more the pressure will be stepped up.feedback

I hope we manage to get them to realise they have to release them. If not, then this will move into a different phase, but at the moment what we are trying to do is to make sure that that diplomatic initiative works.feedback

I hope that this can be resolved over the next few days but the quicker it is resolved, the easier it will be for all of us.feedback

Today Britain becomes the first country in the world to agree legally binding targets for reducing carbon emission for 2020 and then for 2050.feedback

The basis upon which these elections go ahead should be very clear: it is that on the one side there is proper support for the rule of law, for the courts, the criminal justice system and the police, and on the other side a commitment to power sharing by the 26th of March.feedback

But I think we are closer to that happening as a result of the decisions that have been taken by Sinn Fein and what we need to see is that, on the one side, there is the commitment to power sharing and on the other side there is the actual commitment translated into practice of support for the police.feedback

Let's wait and see how this develops because for there to be elections, you need to know there is some chance to have a set of institutions that are actually going to be up and working.feedback

If the international community really means what it says about supporting people who share the vision of a two-state solution, who are moderate, who are prepared to shoulder their repsponsibilities then now is the time for the international community to respond to the vision that you have set out.feedback

I've reiterated our determination to stand full square behind you and the Iraqi people in ensuring that your democracy is not destroyed by terrorism, by sectarianism, by those who wish to live in hatred rather than peace.feedback

We support the police fully in dealing with the horror of this situation.feedback

It is important that we do everything that we can in the wider Middle East to bring about peace between Israel and the Palestinians.feedback

Just at the moment to send an adverse signal to Turkey would be a serious mistake for Europe, long term.feedback

A major part of the answer to Iraq lies not in Iraq itself, but outside it, in the whole of the region where the same forces are at work, where the roots of this global terrorism are to be found, where the extremism flourishes with propaganda that maybe indeed is totally false but is nevertheless attractive to much of the Arab street.feedback

A major part of the answer to Iraq lies not in Iraq itself but outside it, in the whole of the region. This is what I call a whole Middle East strategy. And there is a fundamental misunderstanding that this is about changing policy on Syria and Iran.feedback

I have been saying as you know for several years that this terrorist threat is very real. It's been building up over a long period of time, it's not just in this country, you have seen recently, for instance in India, France, other parts in the world. This is a threat that is growing up over a generation. I think she is absolutely right in saying that it will last a generation.feedback

The IRA has done what we've asked it to do. While issues such as policing remain to be resolved, the door is now open to a final settlement which is why the talks in Scotland next week are so important.feedback

So it's up to you, you take my advice, you don't take it, it's your choice… but what ever you do, I'm always with you… head and heart… you've given me all that I've ever achieved and all that we have achieved for the country… Next year I will not be making this speech, but in the years to come wherever I am, whatever I do I'm with you… wishing you well, I'm wanting you to win… you're the future now, so make most of it….feedback

He's a remarkable man, a remarkable servant to this country and that is the truth.feedback

In politics, it's always about the next challenge, the truth is, you can't go on forever… that's why it's right that this is my last conference as leader and of course it's hard to let go, but it's also right to let go for the country and for you, the party.feedback

The most important thing now for the future is that we stand with you and rebuild. But we will not be able to do that unless we deal with the root causes of what has happened. If we don't deal with the root causes, then innocent people will continue to die.feedback

The next party conference in a couple of weeks will be my last party conference as party leader. The next TUC, next week, will be my last TUC, probably to the relief of both of us. But I'm not going to set a precise date now and I don't think that's right. I will do that at a future date and I will do it in the interests of the country and depending on the circumstances of the time.feedback

We first of all make sure that we take account by the reasonable representations made by the Arab League and by Israel of course as well. Secondly we get the resolution down and agreed, tomorrow and do that without delay. Because it's important and that will call for the cessation of hostilities.feedback

This is an absolutely tragic situation but we have got to make sure that the discussion we are having and negotiations that we are conducting do lead to a genuine cessation of hostilities in a way that allows to put an end to them for good.feedback

We have said absolutely all we have to say on this. There is nothing more to add to it. And I have to say the Council of Europe report adds absolutely nothing new whatever to the information we have.feedback

The electricity in 10 Downing Street is supplied by a French company, the water by a German company, the gas by a choice of four companies -three of which are not British. I don't think that is a great problem for us any more. We moved to a liberalised market; We don't find it is a problem in the UK. And the point is that the more open the market is, the better it is for consumers right across Europe.feedback

We take seriously any allegations of mistreatment, and those will be investigated very fully indeed. But I want to say to you that the overwhelming majority of British troops in Iraq as elsewhere behave properly are doing a great job for our country and the wider world.feedback

Let's be very clear: this is not the ideal budget but this is the best that can be done now, or nearly the best that can be done now. Then let us all together – Commission, Council, Member States, European Parliament – work out how in the next few years we can build the consensus for a changed and reformed Europe in which the budget is a rational part of that future, not an unfortunate piece of horse trading!feedback

The rebate remains in full on all spending other than the spending for economic development in the new EU countries. In other words other than that money which we are investing in economic development for the future the rebate remains in full.feedback

This is an agreement that allows Europe to move forward and demonstrate the right solidarity with the new member states, and for those of us who championed the enlargement of the EU, this is an important point.feedback

In principle, everyone wants an agreement; In practice, everyone has got their own issues to do with it, so it is going to be difficult.feedback

I can't agree a deal that doesn't allow the possibility of a fundamental review for this next financial budget period.feedback

We propose specifically a European Research Council that is the equivalent of the American National Science Foundation that will support the funding ofresearch and development projects and gives us the chance in Europe to be forming world beating companies in the technologies of the future.feedback

We have made an important step in the transition from conflict to peace in Northern Ireland.feedback

This is the moment we have been waiting for for a very long time. It has taken years of patience and perseverance and often of disappointment. But we have tried to carry on with unquenchable optimism to give Northern Ireland a better future.feedback

We are today signalling a new approach for deportation orders. Let no one be in any doubt, the rules of the game are changing.feedback

Coming to Britain is not a right, and staying here carries with it a duty. That duty is to share and support the values of this country.feedback

The Home Secretary today publishes new grounds for deportation and exclusion. Deportation is a decision taken by the Home Secretary under statute. The new grounds will include fostering hatred, advocating violence to further a person's beliefs or justifying or validating such violence.feedback

I welcome the commitment by the IRA to end its armed campaign and to complete the process of decommissioning and to use exclusively peaceful means.feedback

This may be the day when finally, after all the false dawns and dashed hopes, peace replaced war, politics replaces terror.feedback

When it says that it will commit its volunteers to democratic and peaceful means and forbid them to be involved in any other activity whatsoever, what part of 'any activity whatsoever' do the leaders not understand?feedback

Unionists will want to know that the circumstances are permanent and verified. But if they are, then proper, devolved democratic government should be restored to Northern Ireland.feedback

I restated very clearly, the position to the prime minister, that the signing of the Ankara protocol does not involve the recognition of Cyprus.feedback

The prospect of Turkey's membership – although obviously at some time in the future – will be important for Europe and its security.feedback

And one other thing I would like to say while I'm on this subject if I might, neither have they any justification for killing people in Israel either. Let's just get that out of the way as well. There is no justification for suicide bombing whether in Palestine, Iraq, in London, Egypt, in Turkey, anywhere, in the USA, there is no justification for it. Period.feedback

The one thing I think it is very important to recognise is that our security services and our police, partly through the joint terrorism assessement centre, do an enormous amount of work in gathering information not just from our own country but from all different parts of the world. I am satisfied that they do everything that is possible in order to protect our country.feedback

We fully understand that we must work much better with the police and the security services and there is a massive appetite up and down the country from the British Muslim community to take responsibility and leadership.feedback

What we are confronting here is an evil ideology….it is not a clash of civilisations- all civilised people, Muslim or other, feel revulsion at it. But it is a global struggle.feedback

The spirit of London 2012 will be the best of the spirit of the Olympic movement.feedback

The great thing about an election is that you go out and you talk to people for week upon week.feedback

The Attorney General's advice was necessary in order to say the war could proceed lawfully. Contrary to the stuff that's been in the papers and in the past few days. He actually did advise that it was lawful to proceed on the 7th of March and on the 17th of March.feedback

I'm sorry I can't do that. I'm very sorry. If you want me to say that I regret the decision to go to conflict, I can't do that for you.feedback

It is very hard when you come in after 18 years of opposition. People have this tremendous sense that everything suddenly is going to be put right and I suppose in a sense – even me, myself, was sort of swept along with that. I just hope in 2005, if you do a balance sheet, it is not all bad.feedback

What we're trying to do is bring back community policing to today's world and to have a visible uniformed presence on the streets, and make sure that's combined with the new leglislation on anti-social behaviour and crime. Its helps take back control of the community for the law-abiding majority because it's only ever a small minority of people that cause the trouble.feedback

Over the past seven or eight years I think people have learnt not just to trust the management of the economy that Gordon has achieved but also to recognise that without that foundation of economic stability, nothing else can be achieved.feedback

There is a sense of hope about progress but as we all know hope is one thing and translating it into reality is another and I hope the conference in London can play a part in this.feedback

There are people who feel passionately that hunting is integral to their way of life, there are people who feel equally passionately that it's barbaric and cruel.feedback

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