In defense of Theresa May

Forget Jeremy Corbyn. May is the best person to lead Britain right now.

Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May.
(Image credit: REUTERS/Hannah McKay)

Britain heads to the polls today to vote in a general election that was called, perhaps naively, by Prime Minister Theresa May, who had hoped to use the vote to strengthen her own Conservative Party's majority heading into the Brexit negotiations. After all, when May came to power last year, it was not because people actually voted for her. When David Cameron walked away from his post after the Brexit calamity, May was one of several candidates for Conservative Party leadership left standing. But then, her competitors dropped out, and the baton was passed to May sort of by default. That's not a particularly inspiring rise to power, and it makes sense why May might want to reassert her own mandate heading into Brexit negotiations by asking voters to demonstrate their confidence in her and her party.

And for a while, it seemed like a great idea. Initial polls showed the Tories walloping the Labour Party and making strong gains in Parliament. But then two terrorist attacks happened, and the conversation shifted to national security. May also came under fire for what's being called a "dementia tax." And despite her robotic repetition of the phrase "strong and stable" on the campaign trail, May appeared weak and floundering when she declined to appear at a televised debate alongside Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn. Indeed, polls show that Labour has cut the Conservatives' lead down to single digits. And yes, Theresa May is in many ways to blame for this.

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Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry

Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry is a writer and fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center. His writing has appeared at Forbes, The Atlantic, First Things, Commentary Magazine, The Daily Beast, The Federalist, Quartz, and other places. He lives in Paris with his beloved wife and daughter.