Was the Clegg rise all predicted in September 2008?

Was the Clegg rise all predicted in September 2008?


Recalling Frank Luntz’s Newsnight focus group

The events of the past 48 hours have reminded me of the above clip (click on the picture to play) of the Frank Luntz’s Newsnight focus group that was carried out in September 2008.

Then Nick Clegg was an almost total unknown and yet when exposed to selected voters on the same footing as Brown and Cameron they responded in almost exactly the same way as that which we have seen since Thursday evening. Interestingly the session took place in Manchester.

And while we are in the “I told you so mode” the following is what I wrote on December 21 2009 an hour or so after the agreement on the debates took place.

“The big winner from this is Nick Clegg who’ll gain a lot by being seen on the same platform as the other two. That fact has the potential to hurt both the bigger parties – particularly Labour.

But the big loser could possibly be David Cameron who, in my view, has made a seriously bad decision.

When you are in as strong a position as he is then the last thing he should have agreed to is something that could be a game-changer. Anything could happen.”

We’ll have to see how the next nineteen days play out but something has changed.

In the betting I suggest looking through the Tory targets against the Lib Dems and find the best prices.

Mike Smithson

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