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British voters are heading to polling places Thursday, in a race that Prime Minister Theresa May’s Conservative Party is expected to win — but not by the wide margins that were predicted three months ago, when May called for the snap election.
In polls leading up to the campaign’s final day, May’s lead over Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn was seen shrinking to 6 percentage points. And while the subject of Britain’s exit from the European Union was a main issue when the vote was scheduled, much of the campaign has instead focused on security, after high-profile attacks on public spaces in Manchester and London.
The polls in the snap election close at 10 p.m. BST — or 5 p.m. ET.
Analysis from NPR’s reporters in London:
“The third terrorist attack on May’s watch has weakened her, especially after it came to light that she had cut 20,000 police officers as home minister. Corbyn has also emerged as a more effective campaigner than people thought. In a rally yesterday, he told voters he’d stand up to President Trump.” — NPR’s Eleanor Beardsley
“May is hoping for a stronger majority to help her negotiate Britain’s exit from the European Union, but her once-strong lead shrank during the campaign. The deadly London Bridge attack pushed security concerns to the fore. Police announced more arrests in east London Wednesday night.” — NPR’s Peter Kenyon
“[Corbyn] has been running a kind of Bernie Sanders-esque campaign, looking for a lot more funding for the National Health Service, which has really suffered. He’s offering free higher education — so, really focusing on younger voters.” — NPR’s Frank Langfitt