Was June the End of May?
"And the conservative party is the largest party, note they don’t have an overall majority." That was the exit poll on the night of the 8th June 2017, which predicted the Conservative's loss of their parliamentary majority. It was the day when the winners were the losers and the losers were the winners. After that, Mrs May has faced a huge uphill battle against rebellious cabinet members, and the loss of respect from her back-benchers, and the public.
She had to endure a horrible conference and is now flailing under the impossible task of negotiating a good deal for Britain. Was the general election a fatal mistake that opened up the horrible divisions within her party, or was this all inevitable even if she hadn’t called that fateful election.
Well firstly we have to look at the pre-election and how the election was run. It did seem like a good move at the time to call an election, her approval ratings were 20 points higher than Jeremy Corbyn. The predictions were she would get a 40-50 sheet majority. And it would quash any doubts, that Mrs May is the right person to lead the Conservative Party. She also made herself the central image, projecting herself as the strong and stable figure; like an Iron-Lady. But the Iron soon began to rust as we see through the campaign.
The image of the Nasty-Party came back. The U-turn on social care, the dementia tax, all started to hinder the campaign. The refusal to appear in debates and speaking to small crowds and the press. Meanwhile, Jeremy Corbyn was enjoying the Rock-Star lifestyle; speaker to crowds in the tens of thousands. The leaked Labour manifesto was extremely lucky, or a masterful move. There was time to hear criticisms before publishing their actual manifesto. Meanwhile, the Conservatives manifesto was a disaster. With all their policies, Tory's image was taking a huge hit. In the end, it was too much for them. They lost their majority.
Before the election, May could slap down rivals like Boris frequently. One occasion was when Boris compared himself to Lord Heseltine's dog, saying "it got knocked down but rose back up again." Mrs May retried, "The dog was put down after the master had no further use of him," to huge applause. She can't do that anymore. Every move she makes has to be carefully planned and carefully carried out. Her conference speech was an absolute disaster making the front pages for all the wrong reasons.
However was this inevitable? The divisions within the Conservative Party are huge. You have the retainers like Anne Soubry and Ken Livingston, battling it out against hard-line Brexiteers like David Davis Jacob-Rees Mogg, and Liam Fox. The Tories have always had this EU divine and now it is really coming to light. Can a party with so many divisive views be really united?
Well in my opinion no. But they can be silenced. They can project a show of unity and have internal disagreements. But they need a strong front-line government. And Mrs May does not have that. She has lost that face of respect. She is struggling through, fighting for her every breath. She looks tired and exhausted. She is disrespected and now ridiculed. There was no one listening to her UN speech. She no longer gets the respect that she once did. And that in my view is because of the election and because she lost her mandate. So yes I believe that June really was the End of May.