June 23, 2024

Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer compete in TV debate – News

The first televised duel took place a month before the British general election. There was only one winner.

Incumbent Prime Minister Rishi Sunak harshly attacked rival Keir Starmer in ITV’s first televised debate before the general election in nearly a month.

The Conservative Prime Minister has claimed several times that the SDP wants to increase each employee’s annual tax burden by £2,000.

Early elections in July

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Rishi Sunak surprisingly called early elections about two weeks ago. In opinion polls, the Prime Minister’s party trails Labour’s Social Democrats by about 20 percentage points.

Political scientist Mark Garnett of Lancaster University told the German news agency: “Rishi Sunak hopes that a snap election will reduce the extent of his defeat.” In the past, early elections were usually called to increase the incumbent president’s chances of winning.

The leader of the opposition, Labor Party leader Keir Starmer, dismissed the allegations made in the debate as “nonsense,” and toughened his tone, saying: “He is making things up as he talks.”

According to Starmer, Labor only wants to increase VAT for private schools and excess profits tax for energy companies.

You have no plans for the future.

Starmer did not back down from the accusations in the duel. Sunak’s Conservative Party bears responsibility for the poor state of the country, with long waiting times in clinics, high mortgage interest rates and a sharp increase in the cost of living. The challenger also addressed the problems of the education system and the shortage of teachers.

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Starmer said that after 14 years, the Conservative Party was desperately grasping at straws. Naturally, Sunak sees things differently. Labor had years to put forward its own ideas, but there were no concrete plans: “They have no plans for the future.”

“Repair UK” is a third party

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EPA/Tolga Akmen

Nigel Farage wants to run with his right-wing populist Reform UK party in the elections on July 4: “I’ve changed my mind, it shouldn’t be a sign of weakness.” Just two weeks ago, the 60-year-old didn’t want to compete. Farage is a well-known politician in Great Britain. He helped push Brexit as a leading figure.

Great Britain correspondent Patrick Fulser characterizes this news as a big surprise: “It really puts the Conservatives on one side.” Social Democrats should be happy that the Conservatives are now under attack from two sides.

Polls see Rishi Sunak as the narrow winner of this first TV debate. However, opinions were somewhat divided: 51 percent saw the incumbent prime minister as having an advantage and 49 percent saw his rival.

Commentators praised Sunak’s combative tone as he repeatedly asked Starmer directly about his plans. There is a second debate scheduled for June, after which we will see if Starmer can score a better result.