Conservatives’ Childish Reaction to Jeremy Corbyn’s Victory

On Saturday 12th September, the Labour party made political history by electing Jeremy Corbyn as its leader. The veteran democratic socialist had been a rebellious backbencher since first being elected in 1983, during the height of Margaret Thatcher’s premiership, and has been a thorn in the side of every Labour leader since Foot. Naturally, the reception to such a radical leader has been mixed from both within and outside of the Labour party, but no group has reacted as ridiculously – and childishly – as the Conservative government.

Obviously, there was going to be some animosity between a government and an opposition which, for the first time in a long time, are so far apart on the political spectrum, but the extent to which the government are trying to make the new Leader of the opposition look essentially like a terrorist is laughable. On top of Priti Patel’s awkward LBC interview where she outright refused to congratulate Corbyn on his victory (which LBC dubbed ‘Tory Lesson in How Not To React To Corbyn’s Win’). David Cameron, the Prime Minister, the man who we are trusting to lead this nation, tweeted that ‘The Labour Party is now a threat to our national security, our economic security and your family’s security.’ Or, in the words of Antoine Dodson, hide yo’ kids, hide yo’ wife and hide yo’ husband.

David Cameron Tweet

The hyperbole here from the Tories is immense, as these words echo a poster sent to all of the Conservative’s mailing list on which a dramatic black and white image of Corbyn is set on a red background. Though, Twitter did not let Cameron get off lightly. The most popular response to the tweet was a nice and simple ‘oh piss off’.

piss off Cameron

And while this might have seemed like a somewhat crass response, some were a little bit more creative:

David Cameron tweet

Even the Russian Embassy decided to weigh in on the matter, not exactly known for their smooth relationship with the British government as things stand, by saying ‘Just imagine UK media headlines if Russian President called a leading opposition party threat to national security?’ which, to be fair, is a good point.

Russian Embassy tweet

But on a serious not, whatever you think of Corbyn and his politics, this response was obviously over the top. But Conservative HQ did not stop there, as they then thought it would be proper to release an attack video aimed at Corbyn, which is essentially just a collection of clips of him saying things. Some of the things he has said in this clip have been addressed a number of times, though, such as the claim he called Bin Laden’s death a ‘tragedy’.

This was in reference to the fact that there was no due process, the idea that the West could have arrested Osama Bin Laden, held a proper trial and then proven that our way of living was fairer, better, and more just. However, despite these sentiments also having been expressed by Paddy Ashdown, former Lib Dem leader, they are being used as a way to paint Corbyn as being ‘soft’ on terror.


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The only consolation is that, judging from the reaction on social media (though clearly not representative of the country at large), the mud the Conservative party is slinging at Corbyn just isn’t sticking. The appeal of Jeremy Corbyn thus far has not been down to hyperbolic straw man arguments, but for a level-headed series of policy proposals and discussions, a refusal to bad mouth his fellow leadership candidates, and his inclusive approach to politics. Perhaps if the Conservative party could channel that themselves, they might be more successful in stopping the groundswell of support for Corbyn’s Labour party.

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