It’s make-your-mind-up time… and it’s a simple choice: the positivity and hope of Labour or the lies and negativity of the Conservatives.
For many of us, it’s hard to believe there can still be any doubt. After the dishonest shambles of this Tory general election campaign, how could anyone even consider voting for them?
This is the party that called the election out of the blue – then seemed surprised by it. While Labour was quick out of the blocks, announcing popular policies on a daily basis, the Tories were dithering around, struggling to find anything to suggest that might appeal to anyone.
It is quite clear now that Theresa May put all her faith in opinion polls, allowing her vanity to believe what they told her about her popularity and Jeremy Corbyn’s unpopularity. Those figures, we now know, were based on her keeping her head down and doing as little as possible – first as home secretary, then as prime minister – and on two years of media smearing of her opponent.
Many of us believed that as soon as she was put under a spotlight and everyone saw her for what she really was, that popularity would begin to erode.
And so it has.
May has been shown up for what she really is: an empty vessel with nothing to say and no ideas.
Her election strategists imagined that all they needed to do was go through the motions of an election campaign, shielding May from the public and any encounters with opposition politicians. They clearly thought the media would do such a job on Corbyn that it was unnecessary even to bother putting together a proper manifesto.
It is hard to avoid comparing them to the generals who ordered British soldiers to walk across no-man’s-land on the Somme in 1916 – wrongly believing the Germans had already been defeated and would offer no resistance.
They were totally, and fatally, wrong. And Tory “election genius” Lynton Crosby was just as wrong.
If Theresa May thought she could stroll to victory without a shot being fired, she under-estimated the British people.
She now has a permanent shell-shocked look, as though she knows she has made a terrible error and wishes she could just return to her trench and keep her head down. She knows she has been wounded, perhaps fatally.
Of course, we do not yet know what the election result will be. May might yet increase
her majority. But even if she does, she will know she has been in a fight… and that she wasn’t really the winner.
Opinions polls have suggested a tight result is possible but a big question mark hangs over their accuracy.
Since the 2015 debacle, when the polls turned out to be completely wrong, polling companies have changed their methods to adjust for “shy” Tory voters. Logic suggests that this might now weight the numbers in the opposite direction, giving the Conservatives artificially high figures, but we will have to see.
What is indisputable is that the numbers have shifted dramatically: veteran psephologist Sir David Butler says he has never seen such a change in any election he has studied since 1945.
Anything could still happen…and that is why this has turned into such a fascinating contest.
Even though many of us think it is no contest at all.
May and her foreign secretary Boris Johnson have demeaned their positions by lying, deliberately, about Corbyn and Labour. They should be ashamed.
The Conservative Party has constantly lied, publishing tweets about Labour’s plans that are simply made up.
As for the Tories’ media attack dogs, they have continued their dishonest campaign, building up to a last-minute frenzy of ridiculous smears.
They don’t seem to have learnt: the more they have attempted to smear Corbyn, the stronger he has become. It brings to mind that old definition of insanity – continuing to do the same thing but expecting a different result.
As for Labour, they have fought a positive and honest campaign. Corbyn has stuck to his principles of not resorting to negativity and insults. He has answered questions put to him by interviewers – something that is almost unheard-of these days. He has clearly grown in stature and confidence.
In scenes that recall the “Corbyn-mania” of the 2015 Labour leadership election, he has spoken to huge crowds while May has been sneaked into near-empty halls to speak to small numbers of selected Tory members.
Whatever happens in the election, Corbyn has shown he is a winner.
How can there still be any doubt?
Voting for the Tories makes no sense unless you are the owner of the Daily Mail or a billionaire tax exile, or both. Ordinary people voting Tory is like turkeys voting for Christmas.
On the other hand, a vote for Labour is a vote for hope, a vote for a better future for all of us, and a vote that makes sense.
Labour CAN win, but only if everyone goes to the polling station and makes this the highest general election turnout for years.
Don’t depend on others to save the country for you.
Get out there – and VOTE LABOUR.