When British Prime Minister Theresa May called a snap general election back in April (the vote will be held this Thursday) the governing Conservatives were seen as a shoo-in. They were roughly 20 points ahead in the polls, May was liked and the Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn—seen as dangerous, dimwitted, or both—was not.
That was then. It was to be expected that the gap between the two parties would narrow. It was not to be expected that the most notable feature in the Conservative Party’s manifesto would be an idea—the now-deservedly notorious dementia tax—that for all intents and purposes took aim at people over the age of 65, a group that leans fairly heavily Tory and votes in large numbers. Coupled with a scheme to reduce spending on free school meals for young children, it did a lot to revive the caricature of the Tories as the nasty party, a caricature that Brits are all too willing to believe.