Undecided voters are key target on eve of British election

Updated: 2019-12-12 09:21
Conservative Party supporters react during a final general election campaign event in London, Britain, December 11, 2019. [Photo/Agencies]

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn campaigned in Scotland on Wednesday, urging people to elect a government that would "give real hope." "In this city of Glasgow, which has some of the poorest people in this country, has wards which contain the lowest life expectancy all across this country. They need an end to austerity,'' Corbyn said. "They need a UK government that will invest all across the country."

For many voters, Thursday's election is an unpalatable choice. Both Johnson and Corbyn have personal approval ratings in negative territory and both have been dogged by questions about their character.

Britain's opposition Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn waves during a final general election campaign event in London, Britain, December 11, 2019. [Photo/Agencies]

Corbyn faces allegations that he has allowed anti-Semitism to spread in his left-of-center party and is seen by some as a doctrinaire, old-school socialist.

Johnson's Tories secured endorsements Wednesday from right-leaning newspapers including the Times of London, the Daily Telegraph, the Daily Mail and the Sun, which called Corbyn "an unprecedented threat to our country." The left-leaning Daily Mirror and the Guardian newspaper backed Labour.

Corbyn accused "some in the media" of attacking his party.

"But I tell you this — our skills, our principles and our determination are stronger than ever," he said.

Still, some Labour members and candidates fear that Corbyn's hard-left views are an electoral turnoff. Labour was embarrassed Tuesday by the leak of a phone recording of its health spokesman suggesting that the party would lose Thursday's election because voters "can't stand Corbyn."

Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaks during a final general election campaign event in London, Britain, December 11, 2019. [Photo/Agencies]

Jonathan Ashworth said his unguarded remarks were merely banter with a Conservative friend.

For his part, Johnson has been confronted with his past offensive comments, broken promises and lies. This week he was caught out making a seemingly unsympathetic reaction to a picture of a sick 4-year-old boy who was lying on a British hospital floor because no beds were available.

Johnson ally Michael Gove claimed Wednesday that the prime minister was deeply concerned with the boy's plight but had suffered "a single moment of absent-mindedness" that was caught on camera.

AP

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