I think it is a really good idea that Gordon Brown has agreed to take part in a TV debate during next year’s General Election campaign.
I can understand the reticence of any Prime Minister to agree to this, they have a lot to lose and it’s not like the opposition leaders aren’t given a chance every week to grill Brown during PMQs. But a proper debate, broadcast live, in front of a studio audience will give Brown the chance to shine and could provide real excitement during the election campaign. The proposed debates will be on the economy, public services and foreign policy.
It is fair enough that Clegg should be included but I think Cameron could have the most to lose. He will need to hide his temper and deliver the knock out blow people expect him to make, both of which he may struggle to do.
Brown, on the other hand, will be able to demonstrate his grasp of the issues, his experience and his intellect.
I don’t see why TV style debates should not be extended to other senior politicians during the campaign too. Darling versus Osborne would be good but Mandelson versus Clarke would really be one to watch.
In the past, some US Presidential debates have been game changers. With so little left to lose, the same could happen for Brown. Game on.