Leaders`Debate 22 April

Although no clear leader emerged from the second debate, David Cameron recovered his front running position from Nick Clegg and was much more aggressive e.g. in angrily challenging Gordon Brown for his `lies? when referring to Conservative leaflets as proposing cuts to pensioner benefits. He appeared more relaxed, looking into the camera when addressing the wider audience of viewers and performing as a potential prime minister.
Nick Clegg, however, even without the surprise element of last time, was still supporting the Liberal Democrat resurgence in the polls despite weaknesses in his energy policy over the use of nuclear power, on immigration when offering an effective amnesty for illegal immigrants and suffering a major put down by Gordon Brown telling him to `Get real, Nick? over national security and the Trident missile programme. He also badly handled a question about his own expenses, dismissing it as `nonsense? rather than answering it and David Cameron put him on the spot over his holier-than-thou performance in the last debate.
Gordon Brown improved as the debate went on and had his best moment in expressing his shame over the expenses scandal. He also asserted that the withdrawing of £6 billion from the economy (as identified by the Conservatives as unnecessary waste in public spending and better employed to avoid a jobs-threatening rise in National Insurance contributions) would harm the recovery with no convincing counter argument from David Cameron, the latter perhaps waiting for the final debate when the main subject will be the economy. In his closing statement Gordon Brown neatly targeted both his opponents in saying `David, you are a risk to the economy and would leave us isolated in Europe; Nick, you are a risk to our security and would leave us weak?.
David Cameron in his own closing remarks was relatively less impressive than earlier in the debate in speaking more generally about the need for new leadership and a clean break after the past 13 years of Labour government and inviting everyone to build together `The Big Society?, the first time this state-limiting policy of the Conservatives had been specifically mentioned by name during the entire debate. Perhaps the `Big Society? will be returned to in the final debate on the economy to give more practical examples and argue that there are limits to what the State can do given the budget deficit.
As the final speaker, Nick Clegg focussed more on values in emphasising doing things differently, standing up for what `we? believe in, resisting those against change and harvesting the younger vote with his `something exciting is happening?.

4 Responses to “Leaders`Debate 22 April”

  1. Rodney Harper dit :

    Compared with the live audience of 9.4 million viewers for the first leaders » » debate, the second one on digital TV attracted only 4.1 million across Sky News, the BBC News Channel and Sky 3 although the level of interest as generated in the media in general has soared!

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