So the Farage – Clegg one to one is fixed for BBC 2 pic.twitter.com/7JJkHHcHPz
— Mike Smithson (@MSmithsonPB) March 5, 2014
This should liven up the Euros
It’s good news for all who want a high turnout in the May Euro elections that the Farage versus Clegg national TV debate is actually on. The BBC will be staging it on BBC 2. It will last an hour.
For both leaders the mere fact that this is taking place is a positive and will reinforce both their positions. Clegg, I’d suggest, has most to gain if only because he starts at a much lower point.
The whole strategy of the yellows is to portray themselves as the party that is unequivocally committed to staying in the you and the fact of the debate with its associated coverage will reinforce that.
For Farage this allows him to operate on a wider scale and put a marker down for the GE2015. If he can take part in this event it is going to be harder excluding him at the General Election.
Who’ll win? It actually doesn’t matter for both will be declared victory by their respective audiences.
On paper, at least, Clegg should be the most accomplished based on his PMQ and Dave outings. He can think on his feet and hold his own. He’s also less likely than Farage to get rattled and lose his temper.
My guess is that the Tories will be secretly cheering Clegg on in the hope that he might burst the UKIP bubble.