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Premier Boris Johnson has again imposed himself on Labor leader Jeremy Corbyn by a small margin of four points (52% to 48%) in the last debate at the BBC, with six days left for the December 12 elections. The conservative leader reiterated his will to "finish Brexit" up to 15 times, while the Labor candidate diverted attention to health, child poverty and economic inequality.
The toughest exchange of the night came however on account of the anti - Semitism and Islamobia that have splashed the campaign. Johnson accused Corbyn of "lack of leadership" for allowing outbreaks of anti-Semitism in his party. Corbyn returned the ball accusing him of his "racist language" in several articles in recent years (such as the one in which he compared women with burqas to bank robbers).
Johnson attacked the opposition leader again and again by the flank of his "neutrality" against Brexit. "How can one be neutral in the face of the most important issue that this country has faced in decades?" The "premier" asked his rival. "That amounts to a lack of leadership."
"What is at stake in these elections is the future of the country," said Corbyn, who preferred to avoid the Brexit bull at the time of opening fire and closing the debate. "What we need is ambition to invest in the future and end austerity. What is needed in this country is a real change."
Again and again, the premier repeated the hypnotic slogan of his campaign ("Get Brexit done"), even when he asked about issues such as Islamophobia and anti-Semitism, which have made a dent in the two major parties. To the public's question about what punishment politicians who lie during the campaign deserve, Johnson responded with his only joke during the debate: "They should get on their knees ... Or torment themselves in the House of Commons with copies of the documents that say one thing when they are saying another. "
Johnson threw balls outside ("I don't know that case") when asked about the resignation of Alexandra Hall Hall, the Brexit counselor at the British embassy in Washington, who resigned on Friday because she said she was fed up "with the half-truths of a government I don't trust him "
Corbyn took the opportunity to remember "the lie of the bus" during the referendum campaign. Minutes earlier, he put the "premier" on a break when he exhibited documents showing that Johnson's Brexit agreement can end up creating an internal customs office between Northern Ireland and the rest of the United Kingdom.
"I refuse to receive lessons from someone who has supported the IRA and the independence of Ireland for four decades," Johnson replied. Corbyn went out to Quito and recalled how the peace agreement was possible under the auspices of the Labor Party. When asked about why former "Premier" Tony Blair does not support him and has asked for a tactical vote in these elections, Corbyn was speechless.
The Labor leader, however, took the initiative on the issue that most worries the British today, even more than Brexit: the National Health Service (NHS). "The long lines in our public health, deficiencies and lack of nurses are a consequence of the cuts of this Government," said Corbyn, who constantly attacked the lack of credibility of the "premier": "First promised 50 new hospitals, then twenty and now he only has money for six, what do we have left? "
Johnson responded with his promise of 50,000 new nurses, twisted the numbers in his own way and concluded by saying that there will be 50 but 40 hospitals that can be built in a decade. The conservative leader, on the other hand, attacked public spending and the indebtedness that Corbyn's economic plan would entail, who he accused of "wanting to subvert capitalism."
YouGov's survey of the television audience, a few minutes after the BBC debate, gave Boris Johnson a slight advantage, much like that of the first two-week show at ITV. The Conservative Party is ahead in the polls by a difference of 9 to 12 points, according to the latest polls, enough to guarantee Johnson an absolute majority.
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