Boris Johnson in the lead as UK election campaign enters final days

Bloomberg London | Updated on December 09, 2019

File Photo of UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson.   -  Bloomberg

Polls in the Sunday newspapers all put Johnson’ s Conservatives in the lead

With four days until the United Kingdom (UK) goes to the polls in a general election that will determine its relationship with the European Union (UK), polls suggest that Prime Minister Boris Johnson is on course to win a majority -- unless Brexit opponents can find a way to coordinate votes against him.

Polls in the Sunday newspapers all put Johnson’ s Conservatives in the lead. There were some signs that Jeremy Corbyn’ s opposition Labour Party was closing the gap, but not by enough yet to keep the Conservatives out of power.

“No one can rule out a surprise, especially after the surprise of 2017, but on the face of it, Johnson is headed for victory. There is a spread in the polling, but its between polls that show Johnson getting a big majority, polls that show a medium majority and polls showing its touch-and-go for a majority,” , said Anthony Wells of polling firm YouGov.

One possible catalyst for a Tory upset

If opponents of Brexit manage to persuade people to vote tactically for the candidate most likely to defeat the Conservatives. But that has become more difficult because in tight races, its not always clear which party has the best chance of beating the Conservatives.

That is far from being Labours only problem. Treasury spokesman John McDonnell acknowledged on national television that the emergence of a strain of anti-Semitism in the party under Corbyn’ s leadership was hurting the party in the election. “ I worry that this has had its effect,” he said.

Johnson strove to brush off issues about his Brexit deal, denying that products travelling between Northern Ireland and Great Britain would need to undergo inspections. There wont be checks, he told Sky News. There is no question of there being checks on goods.

Johnson sows confusion over Northern Irish trade after Brexit

The UK Prime Minister’ s campaign message of the final weekend was that he will curtail immigration. But the details of his Australian-style points-based immigration system suggest its workings will change little from the UK’s existing points-based system. Both involve offering a smooth pathway into the country to the highly skilled and the rich and a route to citizenship for those who have skills that are needed.

The new plan expands an existing third route for temporary unskilled workers, which is currently restricted because its easy for employers to get unskilled workers from the EU.

Labour meanwhile said it would introduce free care for all elderly people. This is an increasing problem in the UK, but one that parties have struggled to solve as costs of looking after the ageing population rise.

Published on December 09, 2019

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