Three Men on the Box?
Posted by jonathanfryer on Thursday, 30th July, 2009
The likelihood of a US-style televised debate at the next British general election has moved a step closer, with the Conservative leader David Cameron declaring that he would be happy for it to be a threesome, with Gordon Brown and Nick Clegg. Previously, the prevailing notion was to exclude the leader of the Liberal Democrats, but that would now be seen as grossly unjust, as the LibDems have not only consolidated their position as a strong third force in British politics but they actually pushed Labour into third place in the county council elections last month. However, the $64,000 question is: will the Prime Minister agree to take part? Up until now, the indications have been negative, but (Lord) Peter Mandelson — Britain’s unelected Head of Government while Mr Brown is on holiday — has this week indicated otherwise. Perhaps the Scottish Sourpuss will be tempted to make a last-ditch stand to try to seize victory from the jaws of defeat, like John Major and his soapbox did — only didn’t. It’s a shame that a TV debate might further encourage British politics towards the presidential. And seen from multicultural London, it’s a pity that all three party leaders are middle class white men in the 40-60 age bracket, but if it encourages more electors to think about the issues at the election, and to vote, then, hey — let’s go for it!