The short campaign will be four weeks long. That’s a good length. Especially if we might have to do it all again 9 months into a hung parliament. There will be a lot of briefings. A lot of soundbites. A lot of spin. Parties will say what this election is about by all 3 main parties and they’ll all say something slightly different.
We’ll hear talk of devolution, immigration, education, defence of the nation. There’ll be crime, grime, and waiting times. Expect to hear of healthcare, clean air, heirs to Blair, and hot air. Agriculture, arts and culture, possibly even funds for vultures. Keywords for mention include transform, misinform, definitely parliamentary reform. They’ll give us the great ignored, the easily bored, the tax-free Lord.
Despite all that your senses are about to be assailed with, remember what this election is really about. It’s continued growth under Labour or a double dip recession under Tories. It’s a 1% increase in National Insurance for people earning over £1600 a month to cut the national debt under Labour, or it’s a 2.5% increase in VAT for everyone including the poorest people to pay not to have a NIC increase. It’s the steady stewardship of Brown and Darling, or the incoherent flip-flopping of Cameron and Osborne. The big choice we have coming is between the wealth of the nation under Labour and the wealth of the nation under the Tories. Ask yourself whose judgement do you trust? And through all the debates, briefings, spin and soundbites, always always remember:
It’s the economy, stupid.