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11/11/2016 | Donald Trump, Brexit and the transatlantic echo

The Economist Staff

British and American politics often march in lockstep. Now they do so again

 

RED-FACED pollsters and political scientists can now chew over Donald Trump’s stunning victory, and repent at their leisure. One thing seems clear though: the upset owed something to the successful Brexit campaign in Britain earlier this year.

Britain’s vote to leave the European Union put some wind into Mr Trump’s sails at a vital moment. He was personally on hand on June 24th (visiting one of his golf courses in Scotland) to celebrate the referendum result—and even to claim it as his own. It was a great victory for his kind of politics, he declared. During the last weeks of campaigning in America he repeatedly referred to Brexit, adopting its slogans and telling voters that he would deliver “Brexit-plus-plus-plus” (meanwhile his opponent, Hillary Clinton, used the catchphrase “stronger together”, an echo of the “stronger in” slogan used by the Remain campaign). 

Nigel Farage, the leader of the UK Independence Party and ringmaster of the Brexit vote, appeared as a warm-up act at one of Mr Trump’s rallies.

The congruity between the Brexit and Trump campaigns is not surprising, for Britain and American politics often march in lockstep, with plenty of cross-fertilisation. After the second world war the Keynesian consensus of full employment and managed economies prevailed on both sides of the Atlantic. In the late 1960s a reaction set in, producing victories for Richard Nixon in America in 1968 and Edward Heath in Britain in 1970. After brief left-of-centre respites in the mid-1970s (with Jimmy Carter in America and Jim Callaghan in Britain) both countries swung back to the right with the ideological soulmates Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher. These two and their circles shared an admiration for the same intellectual gurus, think-tanks and political traditions. They were followed in the mid-1990s by “Third Way” social democratic reactions led by Bill Clinton and Tony Blair. Again: same gurus, same intellectual circus, similar styles and temperaments.

Now the conventional wisdom that both Britain and America inherited from these eras—support for globalisation, free trade, open markets and multiculturalism—has been challenged again on both sides of the Atlantic. The evidence so far suggests that the Brexit and Trump campaigns appealed to the same sort of voters: those who feel they have been marginalised, or even victimised, by the march of globalisation. According to polling immediately after the Brexit vote, those who voted to Leave were trying, in Mr Trump’s words, to “take their country back”, or make it great again. Whereas nearly three-quarters of Remainers thought that life in Britain was better today than 30 years ago, 58% of Leavers said it was worse. Among Leavers, 80% thought that social liberalism had been a “force for ill”, 74% thought the same of feminism and 69% of globalisation. In other words, they were flatly rejecting the liberal worldview of an open, equal country that successive governments have cultivated over the past few decades. Ring any bells?

With hindsight, the Brexit campaign looks to have been a dry run for the even bigger deal of a Trump White House. The “special relationship” is nowadays referred to solely in terms of intelligence-sharing and security, but it has often been as much about politics. So it is once more. Can Britain take advantage of that?


The Economist (Reino Unido)

 



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04/11/2008|
03/11/2008|
03/11/2008|
24/10/2008|
24/10/2008|
24/10/2008|
24/10/2008|
15/09/2008|
15/09/2008|
15/09/2008|
15/09/2008|
15/09/2008|
15/09/2008|
06/09/2008|
06/09/2008|
05/09/2008|
05/09/2008|
05/09/2008|
05/09/2008|
01/09/2008|
01/09/2008|
01/09/2008|
01/09/2008|
22/08/2008|
22/08/2008|
17/08/2008|
17/08/2008|
16/08/2008|
16/08/2008|
28/07/2008|
28/07/2008|
28/07/2008|
28/07/2008|
28/07/2008|
28/07/2008|
19/07/2008|
19/07/2008|
24/05/2008|
24/05/2008|
03/05/2008|
03/05/2008|
29/04/2008|
11/02/2008|
05/01/2008|
09/12/2007|
18/11/2007|
10/11/2007|
10/11/2007|
06/11/2007|
06/11/2007|
06/09/2007|
26/08/2007|
25/08/2007|
11/07/2007|
16/06/2007|
16/06/2007|
10/06/2007|
10/06/2007|
19/05/2007|
19/05/2007|
19/05/2007|
19/05/2007|
24/04/2007|
24/04/2007|
14/04/2007|
14/04/2007|
05/04/2007|
05/04/2007|
05/04/2007|
28/02/2007|
28/02/2007|
05/02/2007|
05/02/2007|
04/02/2007|
04/02/2007|
04/02/2007|
04/02/2007|
04/02/2007|
04/02/2007|
29/01/2007|
29/01/2007|
29/01/2007|
29/01/2007|
11/01/2007|
11/01/2007|
11/01/2007|
11/01/2007|
27/12/2006|
27/12/2006|
27/12/2006|
27/12/2006|
27/12/2006|
27/12/2006|
20/12/2006|
20/12/2006|
17/11/2006|
30/09/2006|
28/07/2006|
12/04/2006|
12/04/2006|
12/04/2006|
06/03/2006|
21/02/2006|
17/02/2006|
31/01/2006|
10/01/2006|
28/12/2005|
31/10/2005|
26/09/2005|
29/08/2005|
11/08/2005|
08/08/2005|
24/06/2005|
24/06/2005|
24/06/2005|
03/04/2005|
03/04/2005|
03/04/2005|
03/04/2005|

ver + notas
 
Center for the Study of the Presidency
Freedom House