The leaders debate took place last night and not surprisingly there was a conspicuous absence.
Why David Cameron will not come out to play, to defend his legacy, his government will not fail to surprise me. His absence thus saw a never before experienced also-rans of British opposition parties break out their best attires to engage each other in a debate about issues close to all our hearts.
You could be excused if you thought you just tuned in to watch an unscripted All Star episode of Family Fortunes, with the way they lined up. This debate was all about who should anchor the affairs of this country in the next parliament. If you thought it’ll be girls versus boys, you’ll be wrong. It was for me one of the best spectacles of ridiculous democracy ever exhibited. Cameron’s absence rightly or wrongly set the stage for ‘the other’ politicians, giving them much needed publicity, but at the same time giving opportunities to tactical voting and tactical coalitions which in my opinion is a beast that need to be killed off before it becomes the norm. Voters vote because they want change, they should not have a coalition government unfairly shoved down their throats.
What we learnt –
- Everybody hates Nigel Farage…. I mean Everybody. The truly remarkable thing about this man though is that he doesn’t really care what anybody thinks of him. Where he not a politician, I can bet my life’s worth on the fact that he would walk around with a huge middle finger sign to the world. His patriotism cannot be doubted, thats for sure. He believes in himself, in his party and his mission to pull this country out of Europe, segregate us from the whole world, adopt an Australian type points based system that will filter the amount of immigrants coming into the country. He doesn’t want the cuts in our military and wants us to go back to 2010 ‘manning levels’. Trouble is, though I agree with some of his points, his comments are ALARMIST. Christ! this is the man who cried wolf. The other panelists quickly turned on him, but Nigel didn’t do himself any favours by turning on the audience. The truth is A LOT of people out there agree with his brand, and his appeal is very tempting for many who are disillusioned with the strain on public services in this country. But someone needs to tell the man that people of colour are not the cause of everything that happens in Britain. It looks obvious he will not win any seats and would probably retire, but considering his wealth and influence, he will be kingmaker in the future aiming to breed the next Anti-Everything that is up and coming.
- Natalie Bennett…….. What can i say about her…. Of all of leaders, she was the one that was more laid back and was clearly only interested in PEACE PEACE PEACE. NO to Trident (the planned war submarine we are building) NO to keeping nuclear warheads. Actually, NO to anything war or fighting. But she was for pumping a lot more money to the NHS. As expected, she stood for combating climate change, protecting vital community services and challenging, well, anything establishment, basically Vote Green. As far as viewers know, she came across as a peacemaker and without playing her down (because clearly she’s an intelligent lady) her party, The Green Party will be a pawn, a tool for either Labour or Conservatives in the event of a hung parliament. Oh, and she wants to celebrate immigrants too.
- Leanne Wood of Plaid Cymru….. Ok, first of all, WHO????? She momentarily forgot Nick Farage’s name (who wouldn’t), she would like to form a coalition with Labour too (surprise surprise). She believes the answer to the ‘immigration issue’ is repealing the trade union legislation brought by Margaret Thatcher (basically meaning strengthening Trade Unions) as well as ending austerity. She also doesn’t like Trident (the nuclear submarine), she was basically pushing for a strong deal for Wales. All in all, this lady was no pushover, she stood her ground and I believe her debate tonight will do for her and her party what it did for a certain Nick Clegg many years ago…. give it much needed publicity.
- Nicola Sturgeon……. Oh Nicola Sturgeon, why are you not labour?? I would give this woman my vote in a heart beat if she were labour. She gave it to Ed Miliband good; kept him on his toes. She even said he was”so scared to be bold” My highlight of the night will always be her almost begging Ed to form a coalition with the SNP (Scottish National Party) She wants stronger controls on immigration, a pragmatic approach to tackling the big elephant in the room. Coming in with a lot of female votes, this lady is no slouch. Her nationalistic stance though is truly frightening. Basically, if the SNP were given a chance, in about 5 years time they would launch another referendum on Scotland, this time around they might be successful and this country will split, with Scotland going their own way. This is what is really putting the frighteners on Ed Miliband and the labour party. I mean, imagine if the Scottish MP’s in parliament increased from its current 12… They would constantly fight for Scottish independence right? Whatever the case, Nicola Sturgeon is one woman Ed Miliband dreamt about last night. She surely made him an offer that was very and truly bitter to refuse.
- Ed Milliband . . . . One thing is for sure, this boy has turned a corner. As each day passes, he looks more and more like the cat who has come out to fight. The biggest problem with him and most people agree is that of charisma. He never looked like a leader. But right now, he is talking the talk and walking the walk and that is mainly what people would need to see. If he could only highlight timescales for what he has promised in the manifesto though. He claims every policy in the manifesto will be paid for without additional borrowing.. Really?? The trouble with that and his claim of cutting the deficit every year is the lack of a clear timescale for these targets.When will this deficit be cleared then? And where are the cuts? Surely there will be cuts right?? Apart from that though, Ed has turned a corner and this new change in tack instantly made the Labour party the Golden Goose. Everybody now wants to form a coalition with them, and Ed was in the unique position of saying NO to Nicola and the SNP. What a position right?
As a card carrying Labour member, I say this, let the people decide as Ed will say. I think Labour jumped the gun by completely ruling out a coalition with the SNP and I think after tonight, they could reconsider especially after Nicola Sturgeon hinted that we shouldn’t be too worried about another referendum on Scotland. She will be bringing at least 35 MP’s. A hung parliament could also see a coalition with the Green Party – I see this as more likely by the way.
Today’s debate has also seen Leanne Wood’s stock rise. Surely, it was a win/win for her and the Plaid Cymru party (I know) Overall, it was a good debate for all of them, except for Farage who succeeded in annoying the audience, but hey, that is his brand….. I think.
All in all, David Cameron has got a fight in his hands, I would be worried if I were him. His absence last night, though calculated may back fire tremendously. He really should have attended. One thing is for sure, this elections will come down to austerity and who will make life that bit easier for the working class.