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Why did Labour lose the 2019 UK general election? Show more Show less

On election night 2019, Labour supporters watched in horror as the count revealed Labour's worst election performance in recent history. In the wake of the party's worst night "since 1935", Labour members and analysts attempt to dissect what went wrong. Was it the party's stance on Brexit? An unpalatable leader in Jeremy Corbyn? Or a misguided election strategy?

The media Show more Show less

The mainstream media was unabashed pro-Conservative and vilified Jeremy Corbyn and his Labour party.
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Pro-Conservative media created a hostile environment

The pro-Conservative media environment whipped up anti-Labour public sentiment.

(1 of 1 Argument)

Context

Pro-Conservative newspapers whipped up public anger at the Labour leadership and diverted attention from the many failings of the Conservative party.

The Argument

The mainstream media crucified Corbyn on a daily basis in a display of partisanship and bias. Corbyn was accused of being unpatriotic, despite Boris Johnson lying to the Queen and attacking Britain's national institutions (including parliament and the BBC). [1]

Counter arguments

The media is rarely favourable to any politician. Anyone that is going to get into national politics knows this and part of the battle during an election campaign is knowing how to manage, and eventually win over the media. Fleet-street has never been an ally of Labour. Yet previous leaders have managed to keep the salivating journalists prowling Westminster’s halls in search of signs of Labour’s demise at bay. Jeremy Corbyn’s failure to effectively manage the media only further underscores his unsuitability for leadership. [2]

Premises

[P1] The media unfairly attacked Corbyn more than Johnson. [P2] This swayed the electorate. [P3] Therefore, the media played a crucial role in Corbyn's defeat.

Rejecting the premises

[Rejecting P1] Corbyn is not unique, the media always attack Labour leaders more than Conservative leaders. Despite this, Corbyn's predecessors overcame the media to secure victory. Therefore, the media did not play a central role in the Labour defeat.

References

  1. https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/dec/24/populist-right-culture-war-labour-brexit-corbyn
  2. https://www.theneweuropean.co.uk/top-stories/michael-white-on-the-general-election-1-6432315

Proponents

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This page was last edited on Wednesday, 8 Jan 2020 at 18:02 UTC