Da statsminister Theresa May skrev ut et relativt overraskende nyvalg i midten av april, lå De konservative an til å vinne med stor margin. Men mye har skjedd på kort tid: Bare de siste ukene er Storbritannia blitt rammet av to dødelige terrorangrep – og den politiske debatten har dreid fra de forestående brexit-forhandlingene til nasjonal sikkerhet.

Ifølge meningsmålingene har også Jeremy Corbyn og Labour, hvis «blodrøde» valgprogram virker å ha blitt godt mottatt av velgerne, nå hentet inn mange prosentpopeng av forspranget (selv om seier ikke virker innen rekkevidde). Valglokalene åpnet klokken sju i dag.

Jeremy Corbyn har tatt innpå Theresa May, men ligger fortsatt bak. Foto: Flickr.com

Britiske aviser har tradisjon for å flagge sitt ideologiske og partipolitiske ståsted – og før valg gir de gjerne tydelige råd fra lederplass om hvem leserne bør stemme på (og kanskje viktigere: Hvem de ikke bør stemme på).

I år har også tidsskriftet The Economist, som tidligere har avstått fra såkalte endorsements, omfavnet Liberaldemokratene (mens Independent foreløpig ikke har sagt annet enn at Keir Starmer, som er del av Corbyns skyggeregjering, må lede brexit-forhandlingene).

Her er et utvalg av avisene og tidsskriftenes råd og begrunnelser før dagens britiske parlamentsvalg:

Daily Express, som støtter De konservative (07.06.17):

«Driven by Marxist ideology and contempt for our national interests, a Corbyn premiership would quickly become a nightmare for our country. It is vital, therefore, that the right decision is reached by the voters. This is a moment for patriotic realism, not socialist indulgence. On the outcome of the contest depends the course of our destiny and our very existence as a free nation».

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Daily Mirror, som støtter Labour (24.04.17):

Dagens Daily Mirror-forside.

«The Tories have always put themselves and their rich cronies first, and nothing Theresa May has done so far changes that view […]. If we truly lived in a country which works for everyone, the NHS would not be underfunded and parents would not be buying their children textbooks schools can no longer afford. If we truly lived in a country which works for everyone, low-income families would not be paying for austerity while the better off get richer on low interest rates. If we truly lived in a country which works for everyone, workers would not be exploited by zero-hours contracts while bankers line their pockets with fat bonuses».

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The Daily Telegraph, som støtter De konservative (06.06.17):

«The country is at a crossroads. Ahead lies Brexit and the opportunity to negotiate a better future. Of more immediate concern are questions of security arising from the terrorist attacks in Manchester and London. Decisions to be taken in the next 18 months will be critical to this country’s economic wellbeing and, conceivably, to its social cohesion. It is a time, therefore, for stability, not for taking a reckless gamble. Electing a Labour Party led by Jeremy Corbyn and his coterie of hard-Left allies would be such a gamble at any time».

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The Sun, som støtter De konservative (19.05.17):

Dagens The Sun-forside.

«It is between an extremist Labour Party longing to test their teenage Marxism to its inevitable destruction, taking our economy and the security and ­prosperity of millions of families with it. Or a Tory party which was serious, grown-up and honest yesterday about Britain’s problems and the difficult solutions to them. Life is complicated, as Theresa May said — and wiser voters will instinctively distrust the deceitful simplicity of Jeremy Corbyn’s offer: free this, free that, and the rich cheerfully paying the bill».

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The Guardian, som støtter Labour (02.06.17):

«Jeremy Corbyn has shown that the party might be the start of something big rather than the last gasp of something small […]. Bonds of trust and respect have been damaged by a series of votes that have divided us from each other and the rest of the world. Next week, the British people have a chance to change that: to begin unwinding a political project of isolationist policies that with Brexit has seeded a fear of the future; to dispense with an economy where chief executives’ pay races ahead while the poorer half of the population sees income fall; to jettison the Victorian idea that moral courage and enterprise could replace the state in securing people’s freedom from want, ignorance and disease […]. Our desire is for a Labour government, but our priority is to stop the Conservatives […]. Our support for Labour does not mean a ‘progressive alliance’ of like-minded parties should be discarded. It should be embraced as an idea, but one whose time has not come. To limit the Tories by tactical voting makes sense».

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The Times, som støtter De konservative (07.06.17):

«The Conservatives may have fought a lacklustre campaign but they are by far the best party to deal with the huge challenges that lie ahead […]. When Brenda Parsons, a 75-year-old from Bristol, was asked for her reaction to Theresa May’s decision to call a snap election six weeks ago, her irritation was unfeigned. “You’re joking,” she said. “Not another one. I can’t stand this.” Brenda from Bristol spoke for many voters, but not for The Times. This election is both justified and necessary. The logic behind Mrs May’s decision to seek a personal mandate was unassailable».

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The Economist, som støtter Liberaldemokratene (03.06.17):

«Today Britain finds itself in a different era. The vote for Brexit has committed it to leaving its biggest trading partner and snuggling closer to others, including a less-welcoming America. The economy has held up better than many feared but growth is slowing; investors are jittery. The union is fraying again. Real wages have stagnated. Public services are stretched […].Political parties have responded in radically different ways. All have replaced their leaders. Jeremy Corbyn has taken Labour to the loony left, proposing the heaviest tax burden since the second world war. The Conservative prime minister, Theresa May, promises a hard exit from the EU. The Liberal Democrats would go for a soft version, or even reverse it».

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New Statesman, som støtter Labour på tross av Corbyn (31.05.17):

«Mr Corbyn does not seem to understand why 1970s-style state socialism has been rejected throughout the world. He is uncomfortable with the institutions of the British state. He is instinctively against the Western powers and struggles to support the multilateral institutions (such as Nato) that created the postwar liberal world order and prevented another world war […]. We have never supported Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership or Corbynism […]. And yet, for all our criticism of Mr Corbyn, we do not want to live in a one-party state, in England or in Scotland […]. We do not want a return to the politics of the 1930s, when Labour had been routed, and the country experienced hunger marches and the rise of fascism. And we want all traditions of the Labour Party to be represented in the leadership and shadow cabinet».

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