The mother of all U-turns

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The mother of all U-turns

Two of the most famous Sun headlines ever came within days of each other.

On election day in 1992, the splash read: “If Kinnock wins today will the last person to leave Britain please turn out the lights”

Neil Kinnock duly lost, just, an election he thought he was going to win.

Days later, The Sun bragged: “It’s The Sun Wot Won It”.

Whether the paper made any difference or not, it probably did, the issue spoke to the organisation’s power, perceived or otherwise.

In the build up to 1997, The Sun cosied up to Tony Blair more out of pragmatism than conviction. It wanted to be on the side that was winning.

If it is going to pivot to Labour and Keir Starmer this time, well, it’s leaving it late.

Yesterday’s leader column has Starmer as “Sir Slippery”, a man who cannot be trusted.

Today he is “Sir Softie”, pushing a “shameful plan” to “rip up” our elections.

“In their lust not just for power, but perpetual power, they would dilute our rights and bulldoze our democracy,” it says.

It’s quite hard to see how they get from that to an endorsement for voting Labour.

One factor may be that when Starmer was Director of Public Prosecutions he pushed ahead cases against scores of journalists, including Rebekah Brooks, the former Sun editor now CEO of parent company News UK.

It feels like Brooks and others are unlikely to forgive him for this.

Which means that if he wins anyway, The Sun is in the unusual position of being on the losing side to a PM who owes them nothing.

The Sun might flip. If it does, that would be the mother of all u-turns from a place that acts outraged when politicians change their mind.

Press release of the day

It could take a generation to address the highest tax burden in 70 years, says this from Blick Rothenberg.

The PM and Chancellor need a strong tax-cutting budget ahead of the next budget, it warns.

CEO Nimesh Shah said: “A report published by the Institute of Fiscal studies suggests that one in five taxpayers have been dragged into higher rate income tax because of frozen tax allowances. 

“Nurses, teachers and pensioners who would not have got close to 40% income tax a decade ago are facing a greater tax burden than ever before; and under the continued cloud of record levels of inflation.”

Stories that will keep rolling

1) Who is doing better, British Land or Land Sec?

2) Why isn’t Japan worried about its national debts?

3) What do Watches of Switzerland have to say on VAT free shopping?

4) Who do rising interest rates mean for Experian?

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