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EUobserver / EU watches as angry UK kicks off EU elections

EUOBSERVER / BRUSSELS - The rest of Europe has been watching agog at the buildup of an almost insurrectionary feeling in the UK following revelations of MPs' abuses of the expenses system. The outpouring of anger could have significant implications for EU politics, as Britons unleash their fury via the ballot box and opposition parties call for an early general election.

The UK, along with the Netherlands, will kick off voting in the European elections and local elections on Thursday (4 June), with the governing Labour party facing the prospect of its worst electoral defeat in history.

The beleaguered Labour prime minister, Gordon Brown, charged with reacting too slowly and then inadequately to the unfolding scandal, has been buffeted further in recent days by announcements that four members of his government, including two ministers, are leaving.

The weakened government has emboldened the opposition Conservatives, who feel 10 Downing Street is within their grasp sooner rather than later.

by Fran (fran at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Jun 3rd, 2009 at 01:37:36 PM EST
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