The election result


June 26, 2017

Dear Editor
I’m reluctant to intrude in the private grief of Conservative supporters along the Costas at the result of the general election. There they were awaiting the exit poll on June 8 expecting a landslide victory for “strong and stable” Theresa May when wallop, the exit poll suggested a hung parliament. Theresa had squandered the overall majority bequeathed by David Cameron and had actually lost seats to Labour.
In their anguish your correspondents (letters 16/6/17) P J Henham “prayed” for a Tory recovery, while Pete Alden and N J Whiteside (letter 23/6/17) appear to be living in a parallel universe by re-running the Tory attacks on our Party manifesto and leader Jeremy Corbyn. The election’s over guys!
Mr Whiteside wonders that “some people in Britain have lost their marbles”. Perhaps we should change the electorate to comply with his right wing political views! He rehashes all the smears and distortions of the views of Jeremy Corbyn over some 30 years that were spewed out by the Daily Mail and the Sun during the whole of the campaign. (If we want to go back in history let’s recall that the Mail supported Mussolini and Oswald Moseley’s fascists in the 30’s).
Rupert Murdoch and Paul Dacre have shot their bolt and it didn’t work. The public, especially the youth, ignored them.
Mr Alden in attempting to rubbish our manifesto does us a favour by reprinting sections of it, but spoils it by his inane comments. He has a nerve in attacking our costings when the Tories made no attempt to cost their manifesto, a bit like Theresa May not turning up for the Leader’s debate!
Alden and other Conservatives don’t get it, that after seven years of Tory-imposed austerity on people least able to bear it whilst giving tax breaks to the rich, they had had enough.
Young voters and their parents burdened with huge university fees and debt too. Elderly voters who stood by in the past and watched the government cut welfare benefits, saw in Theresa May’s manifesto proposals to end the triple lock on pensions, means-test winter fuel payments (we all know about that here, don’t we) and introduce a “dementia” tax. All that coupled with the crisis in the NHS and elderly care system under her watch. Not to mention a backward return to fox hunting and grammar schools!
Theresa May wanted the election to be about Brexit. Labour strategists decided that the public now had the opportunity to cast their verdict on seven years of nasty Tory rule.
Also, that the party would at last have a chance to put its policies forward during an election campaign where the main stream media had to give us equal air time (strange your writers think the BBC is biased to Labour when its former chairman, Sir Michael Lyons, has said “attacks” by BBC journalists on… Jeremy Corbyn as “quite extraordinary”.
David Dimbleby has said much the same and the BBC Trust castigated Laura Kuenssberg for misreporting Jeremy Corbyn). In the event, Labour went from 20% behind in the polls to just 2% in the actual result.
Yes, we lost the election but were just some 793,000 votes behind the Conservatives in the popular vote, but 56 seats adrift in the ‘first past the post ‘electoral system.
So some way to go to get Jeremy into No 10. As I write, Labour leads the Tories in the opinion polls and Corbyn’s personal rating is way higher than May’s.
The Tories won’t run Theresa May again (wish they would!) so who wants the stigma of losing against Jeremy Corbyn, a man they have vilified for so long?

Malcolm Hardy
Vice Chair, Labour International Costa Blanca

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