On the eve of Britain’s election, Thomas Frank, who anticipated the rise of Trump among white working-class voters in the US, visited the industrial heartlands of northern England to compare two momentous contests

The Red Shed is a simple, one-storey wooden building in Wakefield that houses a meeting place and a bar. A sign on the front wall informs the world that it has been the meeting place of the Wakefield Labour Club since 1966: “50 Years a Socialist Shed”.

I happened across this unlikely outbuilding in the course of an effort to understand the politics of modern Britain as it hurtles toward the momentous decision it will make ’s electionon 8 June. Theresa May presents herself as a strong leader who can go toe-to-toe with the big boys in Brussels; if her mandate is big enough, she will be free to seek the most extreme form of Brexit. If her victory is less convincing, she will have to moderate her stance. Either way, the actual details of the deal that will determine the future of this island are anyone’s guess.

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