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Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

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Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by Ivan on Wed Sep 04, 2013 8:30 pm

The UK general election campaign of 2010 was unique in at least one way – it was the first time that televised leaders’ debates were held. It was decided that the leaders of Labour, the Tories and the Liberal Democrats would be included, because they represented the three largest parties and because they contested every constituency in Britain.
 
Until recently, Cameron wasn’t going to agree to leaders’ debates in 2015. Historically, that was a common response from an incumbent Prime Minister, no doubt because a debate reduces his or her status to that of being equal to the leaders of other parties. However, Cameron seems to have come round to the idea, but he won’t agree on who should take part. In particular, he doesn’t think Nigel Farage of UKIP should be included.
 
So who should be included? These seem to be the issues to consider:-
 
- UKIP claims that its leader should take part in the debates because it is matching and often outpolling the Liberal Democrats, and because it has a lot of councillors and some MEPs and will probably do well in the 2014 EU elections.
 
- A recent ComRes poll found that 54% of people think Nigel Farage should be allowed to take part.
 
- The broadcasters may well want Farage on the platform. Although his slick replies are often trite or even downright dishonest, love him or loathe him he does make for good television.
 
- Many countries that have PR as their voting system have a threshold of 5%. If your party gets at least that, it gets seats in the legislature. If polls are anything to go by, UKIP is almost certain to get more than 5% - but it probably won’t win any seats because we don’t have PR.
 
- The leaders’ debates will be part of the campaign for an election to the British Parliament (not the EU), where UKIP has no MPs and won only 3.2% of the vote in 2010. According to the pollsters, UKIP probably won’t win any seats at Westminster in 2015 either.
 
- If UKIP’s leader is allowed to take part in the debates, why not the leader of the Green Party, which does at least have an MP at Westminster?
 
- Cameron has said: "Obviously, we have to decide on this nearer the time, but the TV debates should be about the parties that are competing to form the government, in my view.” If "competing to form the next Westminster government" means those parties who can possibly get a majority in Westminster, then it should only be Labour and the Tories represented on the platform.
 
- The Germans are having a general election on 22 September. Their televised debates only include the two party leaders who have any chance of becoming their Chancellor (the equivalent of our PM).
 
- After the precedent set in 2010, it's unlikely that Cameron would have the audacity to exclude Clegg from the debates, but that won't stop a significant number in his party attempting to do so.
 
- Alex Salmond was excluded from the debates in 2010 on the basis that the SNP, fielding candidates only in Scotland, could not be in a position to form a government for the whole of the UK.
 
- If "competing to form the next Westminster government" means any party who could possibly form part of a government coalition in Westminster, then all party leaders in the UK should be represented - and that applies equally to the SNP, PC, UKIP, the Green Party and the Ulster parties.
 
Isn’t life complicated? So many issues thrown up just over a few televised debates. There is one simple solution: don’t have any debates, or would that be a case of trying to put the genie back in the bottle?
 
I recognise the need to interest the voting public, but electing a government is not the same as choosing the winner of ‘X Factor’. Remember all that 'Cleggmania' last time? I assume he was considered the best-looking of the candidates, but what did that tell us about his honesty and integrity? Nothing. Our general elections are not about electing a President (sadly) or even electing a Prime Minister, all we can do is elect our local MP. In my opinion, televised debates encourage the cult of personality, when an election campaign should focus on policies.
 
But I digress. Assuming the debates do take place, who do you think should be allowed to take part? And why?
 
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by boatlady on Wed Sep 04, 2013 9:01 pm

I'm inclined to vote for a 'free for all' - any party that can field 20 parliamentary candidates - that way we get a nice broad spectrum of views, introducing the electorate to a range of political views - and we may get a bit of THINKING going on
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by Ivan on Wed Sep 04, 2013 9:29 pm

In the 2010 election, 14 parties fielded at least 20 parliamentary candidates:-
 
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I'm not sure that a debate involving all their leaders would really be feasible.
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by boatlady on Wed Sep 04, 2013 9:32 pm

Might want a series of debates - instead of party political broadcasts?
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by oftenwrong on Wed Sep 04, 2013 10:31 pm

We don't need to re-invent the wheel, the US system is to have preliminary elections all around the Nation leading to a shoot-out on TV between the eventual top dogs.

It might be fun watching True Blues loyally working the North of England with no great success.
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by blueturando on Wed Sep 04, 2013 10:32 pm

Agreed Boatlady....Fringe partys who do not have the finances for expensive political campagains deserve to have their say...put their points across etc. I would put a caveat on that and say that any party who wants to spout racist garbage should not be allowed to participate...IE: BNP

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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by Redflag on Thu Sep 05, 2013 11:08 am

boatlady wrote:I'm inclined to vote for a 'free for all' - any party that can field 20 parliamentary candidates - that way we get a nice broad spectrum of views, introducing the electorate to a range of political views - and we may get a bit of THINKING going on
That is a great idea boatlady to get people thinking about politics which is badly needed, but would need to hand out leaflets to explain politicians speak. ie LIES SPIN & Pulling Wool over the voters eyes.
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by bobby on Thu Sep 05, 2013 1:14 pm

If they fill the TV programing with debate from all and sundry, when will we get to watch Corrie?
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by boatlady on Thu Sep 05, 2013 2:48 pm

If they fill the TV programing with debate from all and sundry, when will we get to watch Corrie

Maybe a PROPER political debate would be more interesting than Corrie?
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by Redflag on Thu Sep 05, 2013 4:09 pm

blueturando wrote:Agreed Boatlady....Fringe partys who do not have the finances for expensive political campagains deserve to have their say...put their points across etc. I would put a caveat on that and say that any party who wants to spout racist garbage should not be allowed to participate...IE: BNP
Good point blue I would hope you would include the EDL within that caveat, with the same amount of time given to all parties.
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by oftenwrong on Thu Sep 05, 2013 5:31 pm

Put all the candidates onto a Simon Cowell-style of program and let the viewers vote on the ultimate constitution of the political panel.

The voting record on TV contests is notably greater than the number of people who vote in a General Election.
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by Ivan on Thu Sep 05, 2013 7:18 pm

Some thoughts about the recent comments on this thread:-
 
- If fielding 20 candidates in a general election guaranteed you a place in leaders’ debates, I guess there would be a lot more than 14 parties involved next time.
 
- Most people aren’t as interested in politics as us. Party political broadcasts are more than sufficient for most people’s concentration span, assuming that they even bother to watch them. Each of the three debates in 2010 lasted 90 minutes, and with more than three leaders involved they might have to be even longer.
 
- I’m all for excluding racists, but that would be difficult to define and could see endless legal challenges. Is UKIP racist? After all, one of its MEPs talked about “bongo bongo land”, and he hasn’t been sacked. UKIP has aligned its MEPs with racists and Nazi sympathisers in the EU Parliament. Are the Tories racist? Jacob Rees-Mogg was the guest speaker at a dinner of the Traditional Britain Group, which definitely is racist, and no sanctions have been applied to him.
 
- If you want to see Coronation Street, I suggest you go to Manchester Crown Court. I assume that the set of the soap has been designated a crime scene by now.
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by boatlady on Thu Sep 05, 2013 8:49 pm

Party political broadcasts are more than sufficient for most people’s concentration span, assuming that they even bother to watch them
 
You're dead right there, Ivan - but people in their millions tune in for discussion programmes and anything where they get a chance to participate, perhaps by voting.
 
Personally, I wouldn't exclude the racists - in a fair debate with a political party that actually has policies and ideas, they will look exactly like the bigots and idiots they are - it's a marvellous opportunity to take the wind out of the sails of any political persuasion that stands on a single issue, or hasn't thought out its position on the whole range of issues that confront government.
 
I think it would be great to get everyone talking about politics, even if it means a bit of 'dumbing down' and takes the politicians out of their comfort zone - to be honest, the people I want in charge of the country are people who can respond in an adult and coherent way to challenges, and who can demonstrate a highly developed ability to communicate complex ideas in a way that everyone can understand.

Get the beggars out of the Westminster bubble, say I!!!
 
I do appreciate this may be a point of view that doesn't recommend itself to everyone
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by Ivan on Thu Sep 05, 2013 10:02 pm

Whatever our personal thoughts about these debates, in reality the issues come down to:-
 
- When push comes to shove, will Cameron agree to the debates? He hates being cross-examined and uses every trick in the book to avoid PMQs.
 
- If they go ahead, will Clegg be allowed to take part? He doesn’t stand a snowflake’s chance in hell of being PM after the next election. Many Tories blame his performances in the debates in 2010 (especially the first one) for depriving them of a majority, and they will seek to exclude him next time.
 
- Should Farage be included? The Tories are scared of him, but as his party has no seats at Westminster (it hasn’t even won a by-election), will they be right to oppose his participation?
 
- Should it just be Cameron and Miliband, since one or other of them will be PM after the election?
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by blueturando on Thu Sep 05, 2013 11:31 pm

I never watch party political broadcasts as they are full of spin with no questions asked. Political discussion programmes are much more popular when 'ordinary' people can pose difficult quesstions to our political leaders. In such instances maybe a 'X factor' style vote should be cast by the audience on whether the 'said' politician actually answered the question instead of the usual fudge...and if they vote NO, then that politician is 'Sin binned' for the next question


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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by blueturando on Thu Sep 05, 2013 11:33 pm

Should it just be Cameron and Miliband, since one or other of them will be PM after the election?
There are many Tories who dont like Cameron and many Labourites who dont like Miliband, so maybe these people should be given the oppotunity to listen to and question some alternatives to the status quo

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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by oftenwrong on Fri Sep 06, 2013 9:36 am

Trial by television inevitably favours the more charismatic. Continuing down that path will ensure that candidates attend RADA before entering Parliament.
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by Ivan on Tue Apr 29, 2014 12:08 am

Miliband calls Cameron's bluff on TV debates
 
Both Labour and the Liberal Democrats are ready to sign up to a repeat of the "333" format (three debates between three leaders over three weeks) for next year's general election campaign, but the Tories are proving to be a stumbling block.
 
Ed Miliband writes:-
 
“It would be extraordinary if any political party tried to argue that cancelling TV debates would serve the interests of democracy. And David Cameron has been very careful, at least in his public utterances, not to do so. But no one should doubt that he is the single biggest obstacle to getting TV debates on at the next election.

Mr Cameron wonders aloud if there were not too many debates last time. Whether they were held at the right time, or dominated the campaign too much. There have been reports that he wants to limit the number of debates to one – or none. It is a pity that the Conservatives will not even sit down to begin negotiations until later this year – when it will be harder to secure an agreement – and have stalled at every opportunity they have been given to do so.

I can only assume that Mr Cameron wants his party’s deep pockets to be used for maximum advantage and that perceived political self-interest lies behind his party’s reluctance to get these debates on. But no one should want the outcome of the next election distorted by the number of direct mailshots and billboard posters a party can buy. And, while TV debates will not level the playing field on their own, they can help enable people to make better-informed choices when they cast their votes.”

 
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by boatlady on Tue Apr 29, 2014 8:09 am

See why I'm voting Labour?
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by Redflag on Tue Apr 29, 2014 8:49 am

Ivan wrote:Miliband calls Cameron's bluff on TV debates
 
Both Labour and the Liberal Democrats are ready to sign up to a repeat of the "333" format (three debates between three leaders over three weeks) for next year's general election campaign, but the Tories are proving to be a stumbling block.
 
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IVAN There is a report in todays Daily Mirror regarding the debates will post it as it is in the DM.  Heading ; CAM'S"Block" on TV debate Ed Miliband today accuses David Cameron of deliberately sabotaging the election TV debates between the three main party leaders. The Labour leadr says the PM has refused to sign up as the Tories can simply outspend the opposition during the campaign.
He tell the Radio Times "Cameron is the obstacle TV debates will not level the playing field on their own, but they can help people make better-informed choices when they vote.   A Tory source said the party would be looking into the issue in the autumn.
 
Does Davy boy really think for all the money that has been poured into Tory party funds by the B(W)ankers hedge fund managers & Tory tax avoiding Lords, the normal man in the street that has suffered at this coalition hands will want to vote Tory or Fib-Dem.  Also knowing if they do get another term in office there WILL be another £25bn of cuts and not too the rich and wealthy but to our NHS and our welfare system.   I think the EU and local elections will give us the mood of the people towards Clegg & Davy boy, and I hope people will have woken up to Farages & Ukip.
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by Dan Fante on Tue Apr 29, 2014 9:52 am

I seem to remember Tony Blair opting out of having a TV debate with William Hague.
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by bobby on Tue Apr 29, 2014 10:24 am

Blair would have had an extremely unfair disadvantage, having Hague's head shining in his eyes forcing him to squint all the time.
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by oftenwrong on Tue Apr 29, 2014 11:49 am

Are we to gather that Margaret Thatcher's successor, Cameron, is "frit"?
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by Penderyn on Tue Apr 29, 2014 1:12 pm

The whole business is based on a cranky obsession with fuhrers and should be dumped at once.
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by Ivan on Thu May 01, 2014 9:01 pm

Dan Fante wrote:-
I seem to remember Tony Blair opting out of having a TV debate with William Hague.
And John Major opted out of a debate with Tony Blair. In fact, there had never been any leaders’ debates until 2010. The incumbent PMs never liked the idea of opponents being placed on an equal footing. I guess that in 2010, Gordon Brown felt that he had nothing to lose and that he was the underdog.
 
Ed Miliband wants the debates in 2015 in the hope they will make the playing field a little more level in the face of the Tory-dominated media and the Tories’ vast wealth - all those donations accumulated in return for selling off chunks of the state to their cronies.
 
Penderyn wrote:-
The whole business is based on a cranky obsession with fuhrers and should be dumped at once.
I agree. As a nation we have this ridiculous obsession with personalities, from posh benefit scrounger Kate Middleton to film stars and footballers and their wives, all encouraged and reinforced by so-called ‘talent’ shows on the television. Politicians having a debate are always likely to be treated in the same vein by many people. It’s frightening that the most popular politicians in Britain (or maybe just in England!) are Boris Johnson and Nigel Farage, two very nasty right-wingers.  Evil or Very Mad 
 
Tony Benn used to say that politics should always be about policies, not personalities. Clement Attlee probably wouldn’t have performed very well on television, but he was, at least in my opinion, the best PM this country has ever had. However, he wasn’t a charismatic character and would be the butt of some of Churchill’s jokes (“a modest little man with much to be modest about”, and “an empty taxi pulled up in Downing Street and Mr Attlee got out”).  Laughing
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by oftenwrong on Thu May 01, 2014 10:31 pm

In one sense this is an argument about nothing. TV debates between political opponents had never taken place until President Nixon squared up to Kennedy and lost - because his 5 O'clock shadow beard made him look shifty.

There is an obvious danger that voters will tend to favour physically attractive candidates - which is no basis upon which to appoint a Government.

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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by Ivan on Sun May 11, 2014 8:07 pm

Why the Tories want the Greens in the TV debates
 
From an article by George Eaton:-
 
“After being harried by Labour to commit to TV debates next year, Cameron has made his most detailed comments on the subject to date. His insistence that the Greens would be included is striking. At least one motive is the Conservatives' belief that the fifth party's increased profile would harm Labour and the Lib Dems. Having long complained about the unity of the left compared to the disunity of the right, Tories believe that allowing the Greens to enter the debate would be another way to depress Labour's vote share in a close election.

It's also worth remembering that were Cameron to debate Miliband, the encounter would need to take place outside of the official election period. Ofcom rules on impartiality mean it would not be possible to exclude Clegg. Should UKIP be reclassified as a ‘major party’ (as it has been for the European elections), Farage would also have to be included.  But as Labour suggests, Cameron's words may well just be ‘ducking and diving’ designed to prevent the debates from happening at all.“

 
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by oftenwrong on Sun May 11, 2014 10:34 pm

Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

How much do you think you learned from the "leaders' debates" which took place in 2010, Dear Reader? Worth a repeat, or shall we stick to watching BGT?
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by Redflag on Mon May 12, 2014 9:05 am

I do not think that Davy boy will dare to debate with Ed Miliband because of all of the broken promises the Tories and the Fib-Dems have made since May 2015, Scameron knows that Ed would list them one by one and all the hard work he did deleting them off the Tory web site would all be in vain.

As Ukip do not have any MPs in Westminister I do noy think Farage should be in those TV debates, although it could work against Ukip if they did debate as I have noticed Farage does not like the truth coming out about his party he tends to go on the defensive which would let th voters see exactly what Ukip stood for. pokenest 
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by Ivan on Sun Aug 17, 2014 1:42 pm

Tory strategist Lynton Crosby aims to keep Cameron out of TV debates

From an article by Daniel Boffey:-

Lynton Crosby, the Australian strategist paid £500,000 by Cameron to help win him the general election, is determined to block the staging of leaders' debates on television. Downing Street sources say Crosby has made clear in private talks with aides that he cannot see any advantage in Cameron taking part in the debates. It is understood Crosby hopes that by complicating negotiations between the parties and the broadcasters over the number, style and timings of the debates, the debates can ultimately be avoided.

Unlike Labour and the Liberal Democrats, the Conservatives have yet to announce the identity of the senior party officials who will negotiate over the terms of any debates. Neither have they taken part in talks with the broadcasters, unlike Labour and the Lib Dems. The only suggestions from Downing Street are that Cameron wants a different set-up to the debates to 2010 and that he believes they should not be allowed to dominate the 2015 campaign. He is said to support the ‘2-3-5’ proposal in which Cameron would hold one debate with Miliband before a debate with both Miliband and Nick Clegg. A third debate would include Nigel Farage and the Green Party leader, Natalie Bennett
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by boatlady on Sun Aug 17, 2014 9:45 pm

I think the Tories would be mad to put Cameron in front of the cameras - it's so blatantly obvious by now that he is a shallow individual with a truly unpleasant personality who can't cope with any form of debate or questioning of his position - in a live televised debate these unpleasant characteristics would be bound to shine forth and really alienate voters.

I struggle to think who, in the current Tory senior hierarchy, could in fact make any positive showing - they all seem a bit paper thin to me - only fit to parrot the party line, mostly arrogant and out of touch - any politician who has ever used public transport or the NHS would make mincemeat of them
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by oftenwrong on Sun Aug 17, 2014 10:31 pm

I can't escape a foreboding that whatever the form a television debate might take, the Country will not benefit should it become a beauty contest.
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by Redflag on Mon Aug 18, 2014 12:31 pm

boatlady wrote:I think the Tories would be mad to put Cameron in front of the cameras - it's so blatantly obvious by now that he is a shallow individual with a truly unpleasant personality who can't cope with any form of debate or questioning of his position - in a live televised debate these unpleasant characteristics would be bound to shine forth and really alienate voters.
There was a report over the weekend that Lynton Crosby is trying to keep Scameron out of the debates for the G.E. in 2015 boatlady, I agree with your summary of how he would preform but the voters need to be reminded of the promises the Tories made just before the 2010 G.E.

There is none in the Tory party that are believable because of all the LIES everyone of them has uttered over the last 4 years, none of them have a bloody clue about the real world that we all live in.   I think Ed Miliband will do well in the TV debates and I think that is what the Tories are really scared of because Ed could come back and CHOKE them with any LIES or SPIN they came out with.
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by Ivan on Mon Oct 13, 2014 10:05 pm

I wondered when this topic would surface again!  Rolling Eyes

The latest plan is to have three leaders’ debates. The first would just be between Cameron and Miliband, the second would include Clegg as well, and the third would bring in Farage. This has, of course, stirred up a hornet’s nest!  
pokenest

- As they’ve been in government since 2010, the Lib Dems don’t think Clegg should be excluded from one of the debates.

- The pompous Farage – who isn’t even a Westminster MP – thinks he should be included in two debates if UKIP wins the Rochester and Strood by-election. (Would it be fair to his opponents in Thanet South if Farage, who is merely a candidate, gets all that extra publicity?)

- The Green Party objects to being excluded altogether and is threatening legal action, on the grounds that it has had an MP for over four years, not just for four days like UKIP. (Cameron wants the Green Party included in the hope that it will take left-wing votes off Labour.)

- The SNP has the third largest membership of all UK parties; it thinks its views on issues which affect everyone should be heard across the whole of the nation. It already has 6 MPs, and then there is Plaid Cymru, which has 3 MPs…..

I’m just waiting for the Bus Pass Elvis Party to lodge an objection for being excluded.  headbang

I suspect that Cameron will use the chaos to duck out of having any debates. After all, he likes to tell people what questions he expects to be asked (he does that regularly at PMQs), but that technique is unlikely to work in a televised debate.

There are plenty more thoughts on this subject in this article and the reader comments which follow it:-

Nigel Farage invited to take part in 2015 TV leaders’ debates

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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by oftenwrong on Mon Oct 13, 2014 10:35 pm

The example of Salmond -v- Darling should still be fresh in politicians' minds. A clear SNP victory in the second, final TV debate suggested the complete opposite of the actual result.

They might as well have drawn cards from a pack.
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by Redflag on Tue Oct 14, 2014 11:50 am

By the time these debates are due to happen it will not be Salmond that will be the leader of the SNP it will be Nicola Sturgeon, I just hope she is ready for the nasty Westminister politics I saw Anas Sarwar Labour MP wipe the floor with her during referendum debate.

I can not for the life of me see why they should be included we all know the SNP would not be forming the next Westminister gov't they would get even less votes than the Lib-Dems.
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by keenobserver1 on Tue Oct 14, 2014 7:17 pm

Redflag wrote:I can not for the life of me see why they should be included we all know the SNP would not be forming the next Westminister gov't they would get even less votes than the Lib-Dems.

Current support for the SNP has risen dramatically in the last few weeks, current membership is around 80k which is vastly ahead of what Scottish Labour has. I wouldn't be surprised if they win in excess of 20 seats come May, with a lot of new seats in the West around Glasgow, Lanarkshire and Dumbartonshire. Which wouldn't be a bad result out of a possible 59 seats.

So in my opinion they should be allowed to participate in any leaders debates that are planned.

The Lib Dems however may be fortunate to win 20 seats out of a possible 650 and I would question wether they should be offered a spot in any debates?
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by Phil Hornby on Tue Oct 14, 2014 7:36 pm

The arguments remind me of those carefree long-ago days when we found out one of the guys at school was planning a party on a Saturday night.

We all wanted an invitation - even to those gatherings you didn't actually want to attend and would never have gone to, even if you had been asked...
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by Ivan on Tue Oct 14, 2014 10:55 pm

What are the debates for? To question who will be PM after 7 May? If that’s the case, only Cameron and Miliband should take part because only they have any chance of having that job. However, we don’t elect PMs, all we are allowed to do is choose a local MP.

The SNP may have no chance of forming the next UK government, but neither do UKIP or the Liberal Democrats, yet (perish the thought) it’s not beyond the bounds of possibility that any of them could be part of a coalition. If the debates are extended to people other than Cameron and Miliband, I think the SNP – and probably Plaid Cymru – should be represented. If not, candidates from the other parties who oppose them in Scotland and Wales will have an unfair advantage by having their policies publicised in the debates.

As I said previously, this is a hornet’s nest.  pokenest
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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

Post by oftenwrong on Tue Oct 14, 2014 11:20 pm

The feverish debate surrounding a TV confrontation is yet more Bread and circuses designed to distract the electorate from the main issue, which is perpetuating the Tory control of government.

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Re: Who should be included in the leaders’ debates for the 2015 general election?

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