Thursday, 7 January 2010

New Sun poll suggests ditching Brown won't sway voters

Sky News is one of many outlets running today's Sun sponsored poll in which 58% of respondents said a new Labour leader wouldn't affect their vote.

Polls are unreliable but I give this one credence as this close to an election, it is policy which should be important, not personality politics.

(Ironic isn't it that Labour Ministers have spent the past 2 years accusing Cameron of being personality before policy yet here we are months away from an election and it's Labour attempting a cosmetic makeover.)

So which policy areas will become the real election battleground when the dust settles? Here's five to look out for during the election cold war over the coming weeks:

1) Foreign policy: Will Dave or Gordo risk an attempt to bridge the icy divide to Obama?

2) Public sector spending: voters want to know which cuts they can expect but they also want assurances over frontline services - trust lies with neither party.

3) Education: How will the parties stop a generation of wasted school leavers ending up on the recession scrap heap? Parents will want to hear assurances.

4) Law and order: Dealing with the escalating anti-social behaviour and youth crime in our biggest cities - especially knife crime. So far Britian is failing and this is reflected in tragedy.

5) Immigration: the far right will play this card locally, yet Labour and Conservatives seem to underestimate the impact their lack of clarity on the issue can have in marginal seats.

Out of the five highlighted areas, I'd say the two main parties could each hope to make ground in each area, as neither has demonstrated a winning rhetorical hand. It will be interesting to see if Tory Spring conference brings any new commitments from 'Dave' whilst Brown will need to hope his 'business as usual' mantra actually brings him some results.

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