James Forsyth

Cameron is much improved - but the Lib Dem bubble hasn’t burst

Cameron is much improved - but the Lib Dem bubble hasn't burst
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It seems that the general election of 2010 will turn on 90 minutes next Thursday. David Cameron was far better tonight than he was last week. This time he managed to bracket Brown and Clegg together and had the moment of the debate when he called Brown out on Labour’s leaflets claiming the Tories would scrap various things that pensioners currently get free. If there was a YouTube moment in the debate, it was that exchange when Brown said he didn’t authorise the leaflets making these claims. The Tory press team then delighted in pointing to a Labour party political broadcast where they had suggested the Tories would take away these things.

Nick Clegg came under far more fire than he did in Manchester. In Manchester Gordon agreed with Nick, tonight he said that Clegg was a risk to Britain’s national security and attacked him hard over Lib Dem plans to amnesty illegal immigrants. But Clegg didn’t wither under fire. He got enough of his attacks on the ‘two old parties’ off for the Lib Dems to be satisfied with his performance. Their bubble did not burst tonight.