While Gordon Brown battles continues his efforts to convince everyone that business leaders have been ‘misled’ by the Tory claims on NI Contributions, it seems that Cameron is facing the more fatal battle to show voters that he is not too inexperienced for the top job.
In a Times exclusive a Populus poll puts the Conservatives on 39%, Labour on 32% with the LibDems on 21%. This poll is the first one to be wholly conducted after the election was called.
This poll does reflect earlier ones and would, if mirrored across the nation on election day, leave David Cameron’s party 25 seats short of an overall majority. Although they would have 30 seats more than Labour.
The poll also found that about a third of potential voters were still undecided and about 40% thought that although it was time for a change, the Tories may not be the party to change to.
These sorts of figures will worry David Cameron and his supporters in private, but of course in public they will say that the only poll that matters in the one on May 6th.
This should also worry the rest of us. With a hung parliament looking more likely as the days go on, we could well end up with no-one having a clear mandate to sort out the nation’s problems. We may see hose trading as the LibDems try and use the situation to plug their hobby horse of electoral reform in return for their valuable support.
Just as worrying it may further damage the standing and reputation of the political classes as the people see lots of hot air but no action emanating from the Palace of Westminster. As a result we could end up with another general election forced on us within the year.
And what would happen to our national debt, credit rating and public services in the interim?
For David Cameron a hung parliament could well be the end for him personally. After all that has gone on over the last few years he has been offered just about the largest and most open goal ever presented at an opposition party leader. If he misses, his captaincy could well be, and in such circumstances should be, on the line.
Another quick election could soon follow a hung parliament. But with no change in the leadership dynamics can we expect a sudden shift in the mood of the electorate either one way or the other? It may well take the removal of either Cameron or Brown from the equation. They of course will hang on in hope that the other side will crack. But that will not help the nation’s plight.