Does the British Election Mean Anything for America?
As always, yes and no.
Yes, because the ideology of austerity-driven neoliberalism, that which is championed by Theresa May’s suddenly flailing government, is a major component of the ruling Republican Party in the United States. It’s what Paul Ryan, the speaker of the House, believes in: cuts to public services to benefit the private market.
Yes, because Brexit, the alt-right-driven anti-immigrant, anti-globalization geopolitical self-harm project is propelled by the same forces that elected the current head of the Republican Party, Donald Trump.
Election Divides Kingdom as Parties Consolidate Their Base
There is still a lot to digest from last week’s British election. The promised Conservative landslide never materialized. Labour gained seats, including in affluent constituencies like Kensington that it won for the first time, but it also fell short of a majority. Theresa May remains in power but has been weakened. She must rely on the Democratic Unionist Party of Northern Ireland for a majority, which threatens to upset the delicate balance of power in Ulster.
We can nevertheless say two things with certainty:
The trends spotted in last year’s Brexit vote are accelerating.
The new poles in British politics are consolidating and that leaves the center wide open. Read more
Conservatives Need to Reevaluate Beliefs After Defeat
Given the vote share Labour has accrued in England under Jeremy Corbyn, ideas from Britain’s mid- to late-twentieth century are once again mainstream — and they pose an ideological challenge to the liberal consensus that is in many ways deeper than last year’s vote to leave the EU. Read more
What Good Is a Two-Party System If It Doesn’t Provide Stability?
There is a lazy assumption in much of the British election coverage that the return of two-party politics was the only good news of the night.
Between them, the Conservatives and Labour won 82 percent support on Thursday, up from 67 percent in 2015.
Yet neither party has a majority. The biggest party is in disarray. The second party has no way to form a government. It is quite likely there will be another election later this year or next. Read more
Election Exacerbates Britain’s Blue-Red Divide
Britain’s general election result confirms that the political divide in the country has shifted from the traditional left versus right to what I call “blue” versus “red”. Read more
Second Scottish Referendum Unlikely After Voters Punish SNP
A second Scottish independence referendum seems unlikely after the region’s separatists lost almost half their seats in Britain’s general election.
The Scottish National Party won 56 of Scotland’s 59 seats in Westminster in 2015 but lost 21 of them on Thursday.
Among those defeated were Angus Robertson, the SNP frontman, and Alex Salmond, the former first minister of Scotland. Read more
May to Stay in Power with Support of Northern Ireland Unionists
Britain’s ruling Conservatives have lost their majority in Parliament, going down from 329 to 318 seats.
But they should be able to govern with support from the Democratic Unionist Party of Northern Ireland, which has ten seats. Read more