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December 9, 2019updated 30 Sep 2022 8:42am

What the papers say about the 2019 general election

By Freddy Mayhew

With two days to go until polls open for arguably the most important general election in a generation, where do the newspapers stand?

The following are extracts from leader columns, which represent the view of the paper.

The Sun

Jeremy Corbyn is the most dangerous man ever to stand for high office in Britain – use your vote to stop him

This Thursday we can vote for Boris Johnson’s Conservatives, get Brexit over the line in January, finally defeat the Remain and second referendum campaigns and move on with our lives.

A vote for anyone else will open the door of Number 10 to Corbyn and his extremists — sending Britain tumbling into an abyss. It is as simple as that.

Sun on Sunday

Only Boris Johnson can stop Marxist Jeremy Corbyn leaving the Britain we love in ruins

Only a vote for Boris will save us from an irreversible route to permanent division, economic ruin and political chaos.

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The Telegraph

Vote Conservative to say ‘yes’ to Brexit and to reject Labour’s politics of hate

A vote for Labour, even for an anti-Corbyn MP, would put an institutionally racist party in power. And a vote for any party other than the Conservatives amounts to the same, because Remain MPs will happily prop up Mr Corbyn if it gets them a second referendum. Or even a third: the SNP’s price for parliamentary support is yet another vote on Scottish independence.

None of this chaos is necessary. Britain in 2019 is a strong country on the verge of great things. Mr Johnson understands Brexit and its potential because he really is Mr Brexit: it was his columns for the Telegraph that exposed the madness of Brussels and his leadership of the Leave campaign that helped win the referendum…

This is a democratic and free country; fiercely independent, kind and sceptical of ideology. It is governed by the unwritten laws of common sense. In that spirit, we strongly urge our readers to vote Conservative, and not to waste a vote on any other party. Here is an opportunity to say “yes” to Brexit and to reject totally Labour’s politics of hate.

The Financial Times

Britain’s fateful election offers no good choices

Above all, the UK needs a political realignment, a swing back from the extremes to the centre. It needs a parliament ready to put aside three years of trench warfare in search of constructive consensus.

It needs internationalist, pro-business MPs who recognise that even outside the EU club, Britain can — and must — remain a liberal, open European power. To those candidates who share these values and are ready to fight for them, the FT lends its wholehearted support.

Daily Mail

The most crucial vote since the War… and we cannot let it be the nightmare before Christmas

The alternative to a workable Tory majority is too grotesque to contemplate. Jeremy Corbyn at the head of a chimera alliance of Lib Dems, Scottish and Welsh Nationalists and sundry fringe parties.

While Labour was devising ever more elaborate ways to pick your pocket and flatten the economy, the SNP would be plotting to break up the Union. That truly would be a nightmare before Christmas.

As you prepare to make your cross on Thursday, December 12, just take a moment to think on that gruesome prospect. It would give Friday the 13th a whole new meaning.

Mail on Sunday

Time to step aside, Mr Farage, with your head held high

Whatever the polls may say, the risk is real. If the Tories do not win outright, no easy task after nearly ten years in office, a Corbyn-led coalition of some kind is frighteningly possible…

This is not like the European Parliament elections, where everyone involved can take a holiday from responsibility and indulge themselves.

This is a deadly serious contest for the future of Britain. It is also important to remember that the implementation of the 2016 referendum result depends entirely on it. A Corbyn government simply cannot be trusted to do this.

Daily Mirror

Banish the Blues by voting Red this Thursday

A Labour government promises to take us on one of the most exciting journeys we have ever embarked on. So on Thursday, vote for change. Vote for Labour.

Sunday People

Boris Johnson peddling lies is the only guarantee PM can offer

The Liberal Democrats, as partners in the coalition government, were complicit in a regime that laid waste to the country. No election apology from Jo Swinson can dispel the prospect of them doing it all over again.

Labour’s policies offer an alternative to despair, division and dysfunction.

From child care to dignity in old age, fairness in energy prices, a functioning rail network, repaired health service, opportunity for all and a people’s vote on Brexit, Labour will meet voters’ needs.

On Thursday the nation has the chance to vote for hope, for a once-in-a generation chance to put the country back on track. Get it wrong on the 12th and Britain will receive a very unwelcome Christmas present.

The Guardian

The Guardian view on Boris Johnson’s constitutional changes: he cannot be trusted

Post-Brexit Britain would need more accountability not less, stronger courts not weaker ones, fairer voting and electoral systems not discriminatory ones, and the proper defence of minority interests against the central government juggernaut.

The choice is stark and urgent: those who are comfortable with the possibility of autocracy and government by decree will vote for Mr Johnson. Those who value their liberties and our democracy will not.

The Observer

After a tawdry campaign of lies and racism, the choice is clear – anyone but Johnson

On Thursday voters have the chance to strip power from a dangerous charlatan. We abhor Corbyn’s failures on antisemitism; we recall Lib Dem complicity in the dreadful policies of the coalition government; we are no allies of the cause of Scottish and Welsh independence.

But we urge our readers to exercise their judgment and, as their conscience allows, vote for the pro-referendum, progressive candidate most likely to deny Johnson the opportunity to wreak existential damage on our country.

Daily Express

Solid manifesto puts Boris in driving seat

The terrible bumps in the road with a Corbyn government, backed by the odious Nicola Sturgeon and her Scottish Nationalist fanatics, would not only crash the economy but break the country up while leaving us stuck in a permanent EU lay-by.

So let’s put Boris behind the wheel, rev up the engine for Brexit Britain and power ahead to prosperity instead.

Sunday Express

Vote Tory if you really want to get Brexit done

The choice is clear. Every vote for Labour – or indeed for any other opposition party, including the Liberal Democrats – will help put Corbyn and his Marxist cabal in power.

The consequent political revolution will crush everything in sight, from enterprise to Brexit, from press freedom to Parliamentary governance.

The only way to avoid this historic calamity and keep Corbyn out is to support the Tories.

New Statesman

Britain deserves better

…we have resolved to endorse no party at this general election. As a publication that is beholden to no party or faction, that defends the intellectual traditions of scepticism, independence of thought, the spirit of criticism and a willingness to debate, we believe that voters deserve better.

However, we are not without hope of meaningful change and urge all our readers to vote, tactically if necessary, to deprive Mr Johnson’s hard Brexit Conservatives of a majority.

The Spectator

This is the most important election in modern history – so vote, and vote Tory

The sheer pace of political drama this year has left the country exasperated and exhausted. Many Remainers and Labour supporters will be tempted to abstain, given the prospect of a Corbyn government.But Ian Austin, the Dudley North MP who quit Labour in disgust, has put it well: democratic elections mean picking sides. And by the end of next week, either Jeremy Corbyn or Boris Johnson will be in No. 10. In this regard, the British system offers a crude, binary choice. Some may wish it were another choice. But it’s the only one on offer.

It will be tempting for many to abstain, to give next week’s election a miss and hope that this muddle somehow resolves itself. But that would be a grave misjudgment. The stakes are as high as in any election in living memory. Never in our country’s modern history has it been more important to vote — and vote Conservative.

The Economist

Britain’s nightmare before Christmas

…the Lib Dems are closest to the liberalism on which this newspaper was founded. A strong Lib Dem showing would signal to voters who favour open markets and a liberal society that the centre is alive…

If Britain withdraws from the EU in January, the Lib Dem MPs will be among the best advocates of a deep trade deal and the strongest opponents of no-deal. There is no good outcome to this nightmare of an election. But for the centre to hold is the best hope for Britain

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