After U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his Tory party won a strong majority in the general election Thursday, British progressives mourned the “utterly devastating” result and geared up for a fight to defend the National Health Service from more right-wing budget cuts and privatization efforts.
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“People running our NHS are crying out for more help, begging people not to vote Conservative due to the constant cuts,” tweeted London-based activist Ellen Rose. “Seems they were ignored by the people they try to save every day.”
“The fight goes on. We need to occupy every single space with our politics louder and stronger. Protest the privatization of the NHS, defend migrants, fight evictions, take care of your neighbors.”
Following his victory, which is expected to give the Conservatives a 75-seat majority, Johnson declared that the election result has granted him “a powerful new mandate to get Brexit done.”
Just two weeks before the vote, U.K. Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn unveiled over 450 pages of documents that he said showed a Tory plan to privatize the NHS in negotiations with the U.S. over a possible post-Brexit trade pact.
“Mega-corporations see Johnson’s alliance with Trump as a chance to make billions from the illness and sickness of people in this country,” said Corbyn. “And if the Conservatives have their way and this deal goes forward, the changes I’ve revealed will be almost irreversible.”
As Common Dreams reported, documents obtained by the Daily Mirror last month showed that the U.S. pharmaceutical industry is lobbying trade negotiators to open the British drug market as part of any new trade agreement.
In a tweet Friday morning, U.S. President Donald Trump congratulated Johnson on his “great win”and said “Britain and the United States will now be free to strike a massive new Trade Deal after Brexit.”
“This deal has the potential to be far bigger and more lucrative than any deal that could be made with the E.U.,” Trump added. “Celebrate Boris!”
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