No doubt about it, Nick Clegg had nothing to lose and everything to gain, and he surely made the most of the Great Leaders’ Debate. He looked relaxed, assured. He was even enjoying himself. And he won the debate hands down.
In spite of the online polls, Gordon Brown came across as predictably competent particularly on the big issue of economics. The contrast between himself and David Cameron showed Cameron to be shallow, indeed scared of figures. He kept trying to change the subject. This is the Tory’s Achilles Heel.
A straight debate on finance between Brown and Cameron would produce one decisive winner, and it wouldn’t be Cameron. (How I wish there was to be a television economics debate between George Osborne, Alastair Darling and Vince Cable – actually that would be cruel and inhuman punishment for the Boy George …. but it would be fun!).
Cameron looked like the school sulk, clearly the less liked of the three by the others. You could imagine Brown and Clegg finding an accommodation, and a Chancellor Cable would appeal to many.
Cameron may have polled well amongst Conservative supporters but did little to convince undecided supporters to vote for the change he is advocating.
But there was something lacking in this debate, something that could have made a real difference. It wasn’t a debate stifled by too many rules. It was definitely enhanced by Nick Clegg’s presence, and the Lib Dems will receive a massive boost from this. No, what was missing was a woman’s input. Can you imagine what a difference Caroline Lucas would have made. Clegg would have responded positively, she would have brought out the best in Brown (as does Sarah), but it would have exposed Cameron further. Have you noticed how he manhandles Sam Cam, holding her by the wrist and guiding her with an arm up her back?
First round to Clegg. Brown did ok. Cameron must learn not to come across as the spoiled school boy he is. Actually I hope he doesn’t learn!
Filed under: General Election 2010, Politics | Tagged: Alastair Darling, Caroline Lucas, David Cameron, George Osborne, Gordon Brown, Leaders' Debate, Nick Clegg, Samantha Cameron, Sarah Brown, Vince Cable | 12 Comments »