In our second installment, Uncut’s weekly review of the campaign looks at the events of week 3.
Labour’s costed policies
Sunday 12 April – Marr and Osborne. The core Tory strength is a reputation for fiscal probity. Yet here was prime time Osborne appearing anything but.
After more than five years when it has usually seemed that only one party, the Tories, know how to make their sums add up, Marr suddenly left the impression that this party is Labour, not the Tories.
Sam Dale has previously argued on Uncut that the Tory advantage on fiscal credibility is so well established that they can afford, as they certainly now are, to play fast and loose with it. In doing so, though, they deepen a theme of the Tory campaign identified by Jonathan Todd: taking people for idiots.
If Labour keeps showing how our policies are costed, the Tories might just find a trump card slipping away at the last, crucial moment.
The manifesto launch event
The team managing Labour’s events deserve some recognition. Often overlooked as the plaudits go to the more flashy spinners, events folk only tend to get mentioned when something has gone wrong.
But for Labour, trying to shift some pretty entrenched pre-campaign stereotypes, the backdrop and staging of the set-piece events needs to provide the pictures that validate the message.
If anything were to go wrong – as at Ukip’s campaign launch when the blu tak came unstuck and the backdrop fell down – then it’s a lock for the news bulletins as a metaphor for a campaign in trouble.
This week’s manifesto launch was another in a growing list of impressive events.
The message was about responsibility and fiscal discipline and the pictures of Ed Miliband at the event reflected this exactly.