The election campaign has resumed today following Saturday night’s terror attack in London. The recency of the tragedy means that security is the main issue politicians have been arguing about. Jeremy Corbyn made the first move last night by using the 20,000 reduction in police numbers under Theresa May’s watch to accuse her of trying to “protect the public on the cheap”. The Prime Minister responded this morning by accusing him of “failing to meet even the minimum requirement of the job” by doing things like “giving cover to the IRA”. She also rebutted his attack line on police cuts, pointing out that she had increased the number of armed police officers and provided funding for an additional 1,900 officers at MI5, MI6 and GCHQ.
In response, the Labour leader stepped up his rhetoric in an interview with ITV by calling on Mrs May to resign as Prime Minister over her record on police cuts. When asked if he would support calls for her to step down, he replied: “Indeed I would.” He dialled down his tone in a later interview and insisted he did not think she should resign, adding: “I’m not backing away from anything. There is an election on now. There is a choice before everybody”. Meanwhile, the President of the United States has been barracking Sadiq Khan on Twitter for saying there was “no reason to be alarmed” – despite the fact that the quote from the London Mayor refers to the extra police presence in the capital rather than the attack itself.
Voters have a big decision to make in three days, although Lord Tebbit has made one thing clear in his piece today: “The electors know that had he been Prime Minister last Saturday more innocent people would now be dead and three terrorist murderers would be alive.” Looking ahead to polling day, he concludes, “it would be hard to think that a sophisticated electorate would make the wrong choice on Thursday.”
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