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Television debates : comments.
at 08:04pm on 18/04/2017
A debate between possible prime ministers is a very different thing than a debate including leaders of smaller parties. I see very little way of sensibly dealing with the different geographic footprint of UK political parties. In 2010 we objected because the SNP weren’t included in a debate; in 2015 a debate included the SNP and Plaid and the English Greens, but not the Scottish Greens. And a consistent dearth of Northern Irish parties. And I’m never happy about the prominence that the broadcasters give to UKIP, considering how limited their Westminster presence has been.
Anyway, I feel we get much more from a detailed one-on-one interview with a party leader; the Today programme, or perhaps Andrew Neil.
2017-04-18 08:06 pm (UTC)
at 08:28pm on 18/04/2017
A one-to-one could certainly be more informative, but wouldn't get the audience - most folk would only watch whoever the big two happened to be.
For leaders debates, I'm in favour of including all the leaders - definitely including the Northern Irish leaders. Yes, I'm sure it would get a bit unwieldy, but I understand it's been done in other countries, and lack of exposure to the politics of other parts of the UK is one reason why the K is not very U!
Agreed on UKIP; I wouldn't include them as of now, because my criterion for inclusion of a party's leader would be the party having at least one current seat in the Parliament being elected. Unfortunately - in my view - that would also exclude the Scottish Greens, but there has to be a cut-off point somewhere and I think that one's both reasonably inclusive and defensible.