Election day ahead: May and Corbyn to face Paxman, but not together

Lance Nichols
June 6, 2017

British Prime Minister Theresa May has sought to re-focus the Conservative general election campaign on the forthcoming Brexit negotiations after seeing Labour close the gap in the opinion polls.

While only 12 per cent of 18- to 24-year-olds said they would vote Conservative, 69 per cent of them would opt to elect Jeremy Corbyn to Downing Street, the poll showed.

The studio audiences have been selected with an eye toward balance.

Ten days before the United Kingdom goes to the polls, the two party leaders separately faced wide-ranging questions on their manifestos, on Brexit and on past political stances and comments from the veteran tough questioner.

"We have to be prepared to walk out", the premier insisted, noting that some people in Europe were "talking about punishing us".

George Hales appeared to be referencing Mrs May's "no deal is better than a bad deal" comment by tweeting: "No debate is better than a bad debate".

Mrs May defended her social care reforms and was repeatedly asked if she had changed her mind on Brexit.

Returning to the issue on Monday, Labour accused May of "ducking" questions over the proposals and highlighted uncertainty over her plans for heating subsidies for retirees, free school meals, tax for the self-employed, and funding for the National Health Service.

The analysis assumes 10 years of domiciliary care at a cost of £14,560 a year as well as charges including estate agent fees, deferred payment fees, interest payments and legal fees.

She also received criticism for planned Conservative cuts to social benefits, but said she was determined to take on hard issues and do the right thing for the country.

She retorted: "I think, Jeremy, you will find that what the people in Brussels look at is the record I had of negotiating with them in Brussels and delivering for this country on a number of issues on justice and home affairs which people said we were never going to get, and I got those negotiations".

"All of these acts have been deliberately timed to affect the result of the general election which will take place on 8th June", she said in earlier this month.

She will also present the Conservatives as the best party to defend Britain's sovereignty during the negotiations, and to push down immigration numbers - the two key concerns for most pro-Brexit voters, including those in traditional Labour areas.

Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn at a rally in Glasgow.

A small business owner attacked Mr Corbyn's "ruthless short-sighted policies" such as increasing corporation tax and putting VAT on private school fees. When the campaign resumed on Friday, May told reporters at the Group of Seven meeting in Sicily that Corbyn "frankly isn't up to the job", after he suggested Britain's foreign policy had made the country less safe. "We have to look at the evidence that is there at the time to make that fatal decision one way or the other".

At one point a heckler yelled, "You've clearly failed". To the surprise of many Tories, that agenda is alarmingly popular.

Other reports by TheDigitalNewspaper

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