Daniel Korski

Tories win Today’s first post-debate debate

Tories win Today's first post-debate debate
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Today's debate was riveting. It showed two candidates who were miles away from each other. One was clear, honest and able to avoid the traps set by the interviewer. The other was dissembling and unclear, his line of argument collapsing under the barrage of questioning. If a doubting voter had heard the debate, unsure beforehand whether to vote Tory or Lib Dem, they would likely have plumped for the former, afterwards.

Oh yes, there was a debate yesterday, too, among the three party leaders. But that's not what I'm talking about. No, with the debates now firmly part of the British political system, an equally important feature has arrived with it: the post-debate debate. This morning's debate stage was not a TV studio but on the Today programme and it featured William Hague and Vince Cable.

The two went at it trying to explain to the cereral-munching audience how their respective leaders did yesterday. (Perhaps as a sign that Gordon Brown is now effectively out of the race, I did not hear a Labour post-debate spinner). Vince Cable was stuck having to explain away Nick Clegg's immigration gaffe last night. The result was terribly contorted - the Lib Dem leader meant the 80 percent immigration remark to refer to working migrants. I know, it makes even less sense now. William Hague on the other hand was clear on VAT, and clear on the deficit-reduction.

So: Conservatives 1, Lib Democrats 0.