In truth the format didn’t really work. There were too many protagonists for it to ever really become a proper debate. The conclusion was a series of Party Political Broadcasts that some handled better, and seemingly more genuinely, than others. In particular Ed Miliband looked like he was reading from an autocued manifesto.
But of one thing there can be no doubt at all. The arrival of Nicola Sturgeon as a serious politician on the national stage.
Here is the result of The Guardian’s Poll of (snap) polls showing the average of all four polls released after the debate.
Here is You Gov’s snap poll that shows Sturgeon actually WINNING the debate. (How is that possible?)
Here’s the result according to Twitter which puts her level with Clegg.
This simply should not happen.
Personally, I thought Leanne Wood had an exemplary performance but she and Natalie Bennet (less good, but certainly commendable) did not convert their performances into rating points.
What I take from this then is that although I did not rate his performance Miliband actually emerged with some prime ministerial credibility. Cameron didn’t blow it and Farage is becoming a loveable buffoon (along the lines of Boris Johnstone – but without his brains). It seems the British public like his tomfoolery and are prepared to ignore statements (ar actually agree with them) like “We have to build a new house every 7 minutes to cope with migrants.”
Leanne Wood clearly played a too overt Welsh card to garner widespread support, but Sturgeon batted from a wider perspective allaying all those hideous Daily Mail/Torygraph slanderous headlines about the SNP trying to sabotage Westminster and only interested in one thing – the dissolution of the Union.
Instead what she demonstrated was a progressive Social Democratic agenda as opposed to a 20th/19th century socialist or, worse, a 21st century neoliberal politic.
Nicola Sturgeon has emerged unquestionably as the face of modern politics and has gained outrageous respect. Hail Hail.