Stories

SaveSave story

Britons broke the anti-elite fever

Lost my what? (AP/Alastair Grant)

The U.K.'s repudiation of Theresa May marks a definitive break in the wave of anti-establishment politics that for more than a year have roiled Brazil to the Philippines, and the U.S. to Austria. European elections have now spurned the trend in three straight elections in the Netherlands, France and the U.K.

What the British decided: May called a snap election explicitly to strengthen her hand for a hard exit from the European Union. In decisively denying her that mandate yesterday, U.K. voters loudly rejected her approach.

What they did not decide: The British did not choose to reverse Brexit — Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn is not a Europhile. In the most extreme case, a new British government could seek to remain in the single European market, while still leaving the EU.