Politics.co.uk Blog

Wednesday, 14 April 2010

Cameron says no to Panorama

He ignores joint politics.co.uk/Yahoo! interview request too!!

It's just emerged this afternoon the David Cameron is refusing to be interviewed by Jeremy Paxman for the BBC's Panorama programme. According to Paul Waugh that's causing Aunty a little bit of a headache in that they've now got to come up with something to fill next Monday's programme slot with.

Oh dear.

Ian Dale has been quick to pick up on this and to call it a shame.

He adds: "I'd have liked Cameron to have accepted the Panorama interview as I think that, like Nick Clegg, he'd have emerged well from it, and Brown wouldn't. But it seems now we will never know."

It's certainly true that Clegg came out of the interview the other day well. And who knows maybe Cameron might have as well. But it's probably a bit weak to suggest, as Dale does, that the reason Cameron isn't going to do the interview is because he's going to be prepping for the TV debates.

The Conservative leader needs to be able to show that he can handle both an in-depth interview and a set of TV debates. Otherwise why should anyone take him seriously? Surely he has a firm enough grasp on his party's policies to be able to meet the challenge of being asked serious questions about them? Or is Dale trying to suggest the Conservative leader cannot meet the intellectual challenge?

And given Cameron appears to have backed out of the interview surely the prime minister will now jump at the chance to face Paxman and show he has the intellect and the belief in his own policies to put his case to the British people. Why you would turn down a chance to talk to nine million voters is a little odd.

That said, politics.co.uk gave the Conservative leader a similar opportunity to talk to as many as 20 million users – not ours granted we're not that big….yet – in a joint venture with Yahoo!

Both Gordon Brown and Nick Clegg took up the challenge of facing questions put to them by a member of the politics.co.uk team from users of both websites. It was their opportunity to speak directly to voters and they understood that. Mr Cameron's team have ignored repeated attempts by our team to secure an interview. Apart from being extremely rude could Cameron's people be running scared of the public? I guess we'll never know either, seeing as Cameron's press team refuse to talk to us. And we're nowhere near as scary as Jeremy Paxman!!

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