No clear winner in first leader debate
Last night Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn went head to head in the first televised TV debate in the current general election campaign, and a snap poll taken after the debate had 49 percent impressed by Corbyn and 51 percent captured by the prime minister.
Julie Etchingham hosted the hour long battle of the soundbites, but there was little drama and little new information about either men revealed.
Of the two characters, Johnson was worse at observing the rules and continually over-stepped the time constraints on his answers, and those replies were no more than everyone has heard since being in office.
The phrase “get Brexit done,” was repeatedly issued from the PM’s mouth, whether or not the question from the host warranted it.
Even the studio audience appeared frustrated and exasperated by the repetition and broke into laughter when Etchingham asked Johnson if he could be trusted by the electorate.
Corbyn managed his time with more decorum and less bluster, but was short of content in his answers.
The Labour leader’s focus was clearly on the NHS, which all politicians know is an electoral hot potato. Accusing the prime minister of intending to sell the national institution off to Trump and providing redacted documents as evidence of a Tory cover up, it was clearly his central theme.
It really is no surprise that the poll, positioned both men equally as little headway was made by either in terms of their message.
What was evident however, was that Corbyn’s desire to build and invest in a more compassionate society did not sound as ridiculous as Johnson always try to make it appear, while he did make something of a fool of himself with his repetitive Dominic Cummings’ soundbite of, “Get Brexit Done.”
The final question demanded quick wit from both men when they were asked what they would give each other for Christmas.
Corbyn was quick to reply that given Johnson’s scholastic leanings he would give him a book, and that book would be Dickens’ Christmas Carol which would remind him of the shortcomings of Scrooge,
The prime minister was caught on the back foot and blustered about for a while before coming up with the idea that he would give his opponent some Damson Jam.
The much anticipated programme was a poor use of the electioneering space which had been given to the two parliamentary bigwigs, leaving the way clear for the leaders of the smaller political parties to offer something refreshing and new in the programme which followed an hour later.
Clearly there is still everything to play for and a definite uncertainty about the outcome on December 12.
Most Seats In 2019 General Election