The Greens are offering a real choice in policies in Brighton Pavilion

With the hype around the Leaders debate this evening – the one that excludes the Green Party – there is a danger that the launch of the Green’s manifesto this morning at the Metropole Hotel will be overshadowed.

The three ‘big beasts’ of the Party, are presenting the manifesto.  Darren Johnson, the party’s national spokesperson on trade and industry and its candidate for Lewisham Deptford, is chairing the event. The party’s manifesto will be introduced by Caroline Lucas who is tipped to win the Brighton Pavilion constituency, and Cllr Adrian Ramsay, deputy leader and candidate in the party’s Norwich South target seat.

So here is a brief outline of my understaning of the key points from the Green manifesto: Key pledges include a “living wage” of £8.10 an hour, a “citizen’s pension” of £170 a week and £44bn of investment in transport, housing and energy schemes.

Of course the cynical national media will dismiss the manifesto as pie in the sky, but what the manifesto does do, and to a more limited degree does the Lib Dem manifesto, the Party is calling the lie that the cuts that the Tories and Labour will implement must be in public services.  Trident, and an increase in the top rate of tax, for a start, will go some way to redress the public finances.

Politics is the art of priorities. There is a choice between cuts in public services and cuts in Trident, between investment in Green technologies and war in Afghanistan.  The policies of the Greens enjoy the most support by the 100,000 or so people who have completed the VoteForPolicies survey.  The challenge for the Greens is to persuade voters that they can win seats in parliament.  That battle is being won in Brighton Pavilion.