Everyone, including the media, has been taken aback by what’s happening in the Corbyn campaign. And what was originally touted as potentially the largest Conservative landslide in modern history could end up as one of the biggest political upsets for the Conservatives instead.
A tale of two campaigns
May’s campaign has been calamitous. So far, she has almost exclusively attended events with prepared audiences, with ordinary folk kept away from view. But even with this level of control over the guest list, her audiences still looked like they’d arrived in blindfolds and handcuffs:
— Glen #PeoplesVote #FBPE 🇪🇺🎥 (@glenharveyjones) April 22, 2017
On Monday 15 May, Theresa May held a Facebook live interview with Robert Peston – taking curated questions from the public. The Canary watched throughout and fact-checked the Conservative leader, spotting several lies and half-truths. The public weren’t amused either, handing May over 10,000 ‘angry face’ emojis, compared to 4.3 thousand ‘thumbs-up’ and 1.2 thousand ‘loves’.
The opposition leader’s campaign, meanwhile, has been a world away from this. And the difference has seen May’s lead in the polls cut sharply.
— Fitzy (@fitzy_blue) May 12, 2017
Also on 15 May, Jeremy Corbyn and his team arrived in Leeds for an address at Hyde Park. And as The Canary reported, even BBC reporters seemed impressed by what they found:
— ⚡️🅒⚡️🅑⚡️🅐⚡️ (@CharlesBAnthony) May 15, 2017
The Labour manifesto
What seems to be pulling people out onto the streets in such significant numbers is beyond a cult of personality. This is about policy. And it’s the first chance in living memory for younger voters to effect a real and positive change in their own fate and that of their country.
— Jeremy Corbyn (@jeremycorbyn) May 16, 2017
Labour’s key manifesto pledges include:
- Increase the living wage to at least £10 an hour by 2020.
- Scrap tuition fees.
- Expand free childcare provision for two, three and four-year-olds.
- Guarantee the triple lock to protect pensioners’ incomes.
- Build over a million new homes, at least half for social rent.
- End zero-hour contracts.
- Hire 10,000 new police officers and 3,000 new firefighters.
- End hospital car parking charges.
- Set up a National Investment Bank to finance growth and good jobs.
- Create a National Education Service.
- Renationalise railways.
- Bring water into regional public ownership.
- Take a public stake in the energy sector.
There is indeed a mountain to climb. But the Corbyn campaign is reaching ordinary people in a way unwitnessed in UK politics for decades.
The media is on the back foot. And it’s beginning to feel like the UK electorate might just be about to deliver a major upset on 8 June.
– Register to vote in the 8 June general election.
– Read the Labour manifesto in full here.
– Discuss the key policy issues with family members, colleagues and neighbours. And organise! Join (and participate in the activities of) a union, an activist group, and/or a political party.
– Also read more Canary articles on the 2017 general election.
– Read and support independent media outlets that hold the powerful to account:
The Canary, Media Diversified, Novara Media, Corporate Watch, Red Pepper, New Internationalist, Common Space, Media Lens, Bella Caledonia, Vox Political, Evolve Politics, Real Media, Reel News, STRIKE! magazine,The Bristol Cable, The Meteor, Salford Star, The Ferret.
Featured image via Twitter
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