Nick Clegg Storms First Ever Party Leaders' Debate

April 16, 2010 8:00 AM
Nick Clegg

Nick Clegg - Lib Dem Leader

The polls following the first ever Party Leaders' General Election debate on ITV are showing that Nick Clegg has won a convincing victory over David Cameron and Gordon Brown. The debate was the first ever Leaders' debate during a UK General Election campaign, and the newspapers and polls are calling it a big victory for Nick Clegg and the Liberal Democrats.

The ITV / COMRES poll held by ITV and announced shortly after the debate gave Nick Clegg as the winner by a huge margin:

  • Nick Clegg 43%
  • David Cameron 26%
  • Gordon Brown 20%

YouGov, Channel 4, Guardian, Daily Mail, The Times and Angus Reid polls following the debate also scored Nick Clegg as the clear winner of the first Leaders' debate. Angus Reid said that 42% of voters were more likely to vote for the Liberal Democrats as a result of the debate.

Friday's newspapers have hailed Nick Clegg as the winner of the first debate. They say:

  • Daily Telegraph: "Clegg's star rises in great TV showdown"
  • The Times: "Enter the Outsider: Nick Clegg seizes his moment in historic TV debate"
  • The Independent: "Clegg comes of age: Liberal Democrat leader is judged the winner of historic television debate"
  • Daily Mail: "First blood to Clegg"
  • The Guardian: "Clegg the outsider seizes his moment in the TV spotlight"
  • Even Conservative commentator and blogger Iain Dale said "I think Nick Clegg won the day".

In summing up the debate, Nick Clegg said Labour and the Tories have made the "same old mistakes over and over again. Despite all the problems and challenges we have, we can be hopeful about the future if we chose something different."