The European elections audit
How the nationals covered the European and local campaigns from May 12-26
The Daily Mail: front pages
For a paper so concerned with the EU, the Mail surprisingly featured the elections on the front only three times - twice after the polls had closed.
The Mail's inside coverage was extensive, but almost entirely focused on the Ukip phenomenon and its impact on the Conservatives.
Ed Miliband's perceived blunders were the only area of interest for the Mail, as far as Labour was concerned, but his naivety on his housekeeping budget was not relevant to the elections in hand, so does not count in the SubScribe audit. His inability to name a councillor was, however. Not that any national party leader should be expected to remember every member of every local authority - particularly in areas where they do not have control.
Polling and speculation played a big part for the Mail, as with the others, and the paper's contempt for Nick Clegg shone through both on the election pages and on non-election political pages dealing with issues such as knife crime and David Laws's "feud" with Michael Gove.
In common with almost all the other papers, the Mail had no time for the Greens - even after the results were declared and the LibDems' slip was confirmed.
The opinion pages
The Mail's commentators were strangely muted about the elections until they were nearly upon us. There were essays on the evils of the EU from Leo McKinstry and on the "smug metropolitan elite" who refused to listen to ordinary people's concerns from Dominic Sandbrook. Funnily enough this coincided with a leader denouncing the "smug metropolitan political classes". The entire thrust was to blame the main parties and the coalition for the rise of Ukip, whose policies the paper largely endorsed even though it couldn't bring itself to suggest that people vote for it.
Mac found little inspiration in the campaign, preferring to make Viagra jokes about the Pfizer takeover bid for AstraZeneca, and produced only one cartoon.
Nigel Farage's face made fewer appearances in the Mail than elsewhere. The paper favoured photographs of Ed Miliband, especially in photo booth sets of four showing him not at his best. The Mail was so taken with the bacon butty munching that it ran four pictures one day and three another.
Britain should be grateful to Ukip for kicking the smug political caste and reminding it that millions of voters feel utterly disenfranchised. True, much of Ukip's campaign has been unedifying, with a stream of egregious gaffes and dark suggestions of racism - all too zealously whipped up by the liberal media. More worrying though is that the party lacks depth and talents in its ranks. The truth is that Mr Farage is Ukip and Ukip is Mr Farage. While this paper understands the desire of many Eurosceptic voters to register a protest vote tomorrow by voting, we feel that such a move would be profoundly counter-productive - Leading article, May 22
*based on headline words
The European elections audit
How the Press
covered the campaign and the aftermath
Plus the papers' detailed breakdown
The Daily Telegraph
The last wordle
For too long the Tories seem to have convinced themselves that Ukip would rapidly self-destruct, leaving its voters - including thousands of working-class people who previously voted Conservative - to meekly return to the fold. But thanks in part to the Government's own failings, Ukip has continued to build support.
Next Thursday millions of Britons will vote in European elections to return more than 70 MEPs, yet in doing so they will effectively be endorsing the continuing expansion of the entire European project, mired as it is in greed, corruption and a blinkered sense of the rightness of its very existence.
- Leo McKinstry
Tories, Labour and even the LibDems when the wind is blowing in a particular direction claim they understand people's anxieties over immigration, but of course they don't. If they did, they would not describe Mr Farage and his party as racist. Because in so doing they are effectively describing the millions who vote for Ukip today as racist.
- Stephen Glover
In September, unless Mr Cameron gets his act together, he faces a prospect that Britain, with a Scottish Yes vote, will disintegrate. The consequences of that are incalculable. But a split Tory/Ukip vote allowing such an inadequate politician as Red Ed into Number Ten, on barely a third of the national vote, is too awful to contemplate.
- Leading article,
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