Europe Politics

Britain's ruling Conservative party launches spoof opposition 'manifesto' site

Key Points
  • This stunt comes just days after the Conservative Party faced a backlash for rebranding its press office Twitter account to masquerade as a fact checking service.

The U.K.'s Conservative Party on Thursday created a spoof website purporting to be the Labour Party's manifesto and attacking its pledges.

Shortly before the main opposition party launched its manifesto, a website using the URL "labourmanifesto.co.uk" was registered by the Conservatives, and contains a picture of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn looking confused while mocking the party's policies on Brexit and tax.

The official Conservative Party Twitter account tweeted out links to the spoof site multiple times on Thursday afternoon.

The Conservatives had reportedly paid for a Google advert meaning internet browsers were directed toward the website when users searched for "Labour" shortly after the manifesto launch.

The site identifies itself as "a website by the Conservative Party" beneath the headline "Labour's 2019 Manifesto." It then contains a series of news excerpts criticizing the opposition's flagship policies.

The spoof website states: "All you need to know about Labour's manifesto is that Jeremy Corbyn as Prime Minister means higher taxes for you and your family, the chaos of two more referendums and more indecision and delay on Brexit."

This stunt comes just days after the Conservative Party faced a backlash for rebranding its press office Twitter account to masquerade as a fact checking service and tweet out Conservative talking points during a televised debate between Corbyn and Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

The move had been branded "dystopian" by the BBC and faced widespread criticism for its apparent attempt to mislead voters ahead of the December 12 general election.

Twitter itself weighed in on Wednesday to condemn the action, warning of punitive measures if CCHQ, the Conservative press wing, repeated such behavior.

CNBC has contacted the Labour Party for comment.

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