The UK election results are in, with just one constituency(parliamentary seat) remaining to be counted, in Kensington. The end results? A hung parliament, a resurgence of the hard Left under Jeremy Corbyn and a huge slap in the face for the Conservatives and PM Theresa May:
- Conservative Seats: 318; Change in seats: −12
- Labour Seats: 261; Change in seats: +29
- Liberal Dem Seats: 12; Change in seats: +4
- UKIP Seats: 0; Change in seats: −1
- SNP Seats: 35; Change in seats: −21
- Other Seats: 23
The Tories went from having a workable majority of 17 seats to being 8 seats short of a majority in an election called by Theresa May that didn’t need to be held at all. That has to go down as one of the worst political blunders in British history.
In order to get legislation through, the Conservatives will now have to rely on an alliance with the Democratic Union Party (DUP) in Northern Ireland and their 10 seats. Since the Unionists normally vote with the conservatives anyway, it isn’t a big stretch but still amounts to a lessening of stability and cohesion when it comes to governing. That’s especially ironic when you think of Theresa May’s often repeated mantra that ‘this country needs stability.’ Her political blunder just made things a lot less stable.
So how did this happen? How did the Tories go from being 20 points ahead in the polls to losing their majority? And what do the UK election results tell us about Britain?
Theresa May ran a poor campaign and Jeremy Corbyn ran Bernie Sander’s. May presented herself as a strong leader but came across as anything but. She alienated a key Tory constituency by proposing that the elderly pay more for their healthcare, something she later had to do a U-turn on. She was seen as remote and unconcerned, rarely campaigning actively. She refused to participate in debates and was also seen (correctly) as weak on terrorism and national security.
The point I’m making here is that when it comes to national security and the two major parties, we’re dealing with Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum. Neither the Tories or Labour really want to fight Islamist terrorism. The conservatives are just merely a bit less dum, if you take my meaning…
Unlike Labour’s Corbyn, who actually sympathizes with jihadis like Hamas and Hezbollah, PM May at least understands in some way that the current situation is not good at all and most be dealt with..albeit in some politically correct way, she’s not quite sure how, that doesn’t result in anyone calling her racist or the Leftist press mauling her.
Jeremy Corbyn essentially ran Bernie Sander’s campaign, promising free goodies for everybody without any concrete plans for paying for it except ‘tax the rich.’ Like Sanders, he also promised the kiddies free college. This resulted in a larger than average turnout as young voters flocked to him. In some of the constituencies in the North and in the Midlands the Tories were counting on flipping, it made the difference.
Unlike May, Corbyn campaigned actively. And his openly anti-semitic and anti-Israel stance, something he’s been unapologetic about for a long time brought in the Muslim vote as well without him having to dwell on it overmuch.Overall it appears to have been a plus numbers wise. And it obviously wasn’t a problem for a lot of Labour’s voters in general either. Here’s a Labour campaign poster tying May in with Israel and that old, familiar anti-semitic theme of the Jews running things behind the scenes:
While Britain’s Jews mostly deserted their old home in Labour (It likely cost Corbyn four seats in London in districts with a high Jewish population), Labour still got something like 13% of the Jewish vote. And based on the favorable coverage Corbyn is now getting in the Leftist press worldwide, his success can definitely be seen as mainstreaming his far Left, anti-semitic and anti-Israel views not just in the UK, but elsewhere.
The election became essentially a return to two party politics, and those ex-third party voters didn’t break the way the Tories figured they would. One of Theresa May’s reasons for calling a needless election was her theory that the pro Brexit UKIP voters would now vote Tory since their main issue was no longer in play. Instead, those voters went back to their former parties and split a lot more evenly. The Scottish National Party had a similar meltdown, losing 21 of the seats it won in 2015. And their voters also split among the two major parties.
The appeal of socialism and anti-semitism is a rising tide on the UK’s left, especially among young voters. As I mentioned, Jeremy Corbyn’s friendship for jihadists, enmity for Israel and general views on Jews didn’t stop Labour from getting 40% of the vote compared to the Tory’s 42.4%. And a number of those voters were young voters. The18-24 year-old demographic is one of the only ones where Labour had a significant lead, and those votes made the difference in a number of places. Many of the Labour politicos that disagreed with Corbyn’s views are going to have to come to terms and support him, or leave the party.
Theresa May’s leadership has been severely compromised. She made it plain that she has no intentions of resigning and has already received the Queen’s Commission to try and form a government. But at this point, many of her own party despise her for taking a gamble like this and losing, especially after many of them advised her not to. And their disapproval is mild compared to what the Left has in store for her.
A party leadership election at this point would make things even more chaotic, especially with the Brexit negotiations just a few days away so that’s unlikely. But she’s basically governing crippled at this point. And I wouldn’t be surprised if she either resigns as Prime Minister or is forced out by a vote of no confidence in the future.
Rob Miller writes for Joshuapundit. His articles have appeared in The Jerusalem Post, The Washington Examiner, American Thinker, The Los Angeles Times, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, The San Francisco Chronicle, Real Clear Politics, The Times Of Israel, Breitbart.Com and other publications.
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