Liberty Expose: Theresa May's Failure
She believed she was entitled to the position. She dismissed her opponent, promoting the idea that he was not dignified enough to run against her. She failed to expand her base, she took the polls for granted. No, I am not recapping the failure of Hillary Clinton. It seems the lessons from the mistakes made by Secretary Clinton have failed to reach across the Atlantic Ocean, for British Prime Minister Theresa May nearly repeated history
It was supposed to be a blowout. What happened was political incompetence of the highest order. Theresa May had every advantage available; her party was favored in almost every demographic. She was enjoying the honeymoon approval ratings. Her opponent is walks a line between a true believing ideologue, and someone who is just insane.
The House of Commons should be firmly under Conservative control. Instead, Britain has a hung parliament, with the Conservatives having to make an alliance with the Democratic Union party from Northern Ireland. The British snap election of 2017 is a painful embarrassment to the Tories. It was political malpractice, and now many on the right are calling for the resignation of Theresa May.
It was a perfect example of how not to run a campaign. This would be an unprecedented failure, had Hillary Clinton not made almost an identical mistake last year. Theresa May tried to win the election by monopolizing the Brexit issue; the Brexit narrative dominated May’s rhetoric, wall seemly forgetting that it was not a referendum but an actual election. Jeremy Corbyn did not make that mistake though. While Theresa May was repeating the same lines about Brexit, Jeremy Corbyn was campaigning as if the election was an election, a fact lost to Theresa May.
Theresa May also horribly underestimated her opponent in the classic Clintonian fashion. She refused to appear on a national debate with Mr. Corbyn, pushing the narrative that it was beneath her to debate a man such as Corbyn. Jeremy Corbyn used that time to his advantage, even at the risk of people finding out what he believed.
While Jeremy Corbyn was propagating his ideas, Theresa May did not dismantle them with the precession necessary. A specter was haunting Britain - the specter of Corbynism, and May was no Iron Lady in the response. She oversaw the writing of a new manifesto that if anything pushed voters away from the conservatives.
May has rejected much of the Thatcherite principles that have guided the party, and now adopted a style of Tory rhetoric that seeks to expand the welfare state; ideas which may might rightfully suggest belonging in Labour. Theresa May has isolated one of the Conservatives most important voting demographic, the elderly, by proposing a program that has been labelled the “dementia tax.”
The ideas were not inspiring, nor were they thought provoking. Had she been running in America, pundits on both sides would apply the term “establishment” without haste. They were dry and bland. She gave no good reason for why the Conservatives should be given more power in Brexit negotiations, as if the Tories were the sole promoters of the British withdrawal from the European Union. Labour voters heavily supported favors (which of course eliminates the narrative of Brexit being a nationalist coup)
The campaigning of the election was unusual by British standards. The parliamentary campaigning for the Tories centered around the support of Theresa May, as if it were a U.S. election. Parliamentary candidates typically vote by merit of the individual or the party, not by loyalty to specific candidate or politician. This proved to be fatal as the approval ratings of Theresa May began to decline alongside the election.
This election was on Theresa May, and she blew it. She gambled for a more powerful position and lost the bet. Theresa May, and virtually all in the commentary community, expected May to greatly expand the majority the Tories already held. What happened? The Tories are now weaker and vulnerable, they do not resemble the party of potential that the Conservatives appeared to be before the election. Before Theresa May.
The Tories believed they were certain to win. The polls said so, and when are the polls wrong, after all? These lead the Tories to act as if their actions did not have consequences. They diagnosed Jeremy Corbyn as insane, and ignored him. Meanwhile, Jeremy Corbyn and his Labour party dominated the youth vote by promising government funds and spending on issues such as student debt. Perhaps buying off the youth is popular on both sides of the Atlantic.
Her election night speech was difficult to watch; she made promises of stability, while she just sacrificed a Conservative majority in favor of the dangers of a hung parliament. There is an apparent truth; the British people rejected Theresa May. The future of the Conservative party is now uncertain; considering the nature of parliamentary politics, another election can happen at any time, and it is almost undoubtable that Theresa May will fare poorly – which is why many are now calling for the Prime Minister to resign from her position.
Politics is a blood sport, so they say. Theresa May sought to play the game, and she lost. She gambled away the Conservative winnings, even with a favorable hand. As Britain slopes into in era of deadlock and partisanship, the Conservatives must rethink their strategy and leadership – or they very will might become the loyal opposition to Prime Minister Jeremy Corbyn.