British · Conservatives · Labour · Politics

Battle for Number 10 Verdict: Paxman losing his touch as both May and Corbyn come out on top.

Being interviewed by Paxman is the political equivalent of stepping into a lion’s den. It made Miliband coin the phrase “hell yes I’m tuss enough” and it can make or break an election. I sat there, on my bed, munching away at a box of Shreddies just hoping Paxman would deliver a metaphorical right hook straight to May’s weak and wobbly campaign. But it just didn’t happen.

I mean, obviously if you go onto the Momentum twitter page, you’ll get the impression that Corbyn ran on stage and personally secured 50 million votes. On the contrary, I’m sure the Conservatives page has May as the new Supreme Ruler, crushing Jeremy Corbyn with a strong and stable blow to his wobbly defence policy. But really, it was rather tame.  If you’re bored already and want an assessment a couple sentences, here you go:

Jeremy Corbyn looked cool, calm and collected, he engaged with the audience superbly and he handled Paxman with very few issues. May had some wobbly moments, and Paxman landed more punches on her, especially regarding Social Care and her various U-turns. Ultimately she came up strong on brexit, which is her biggest issue.

For those of you who, for some reason or another, actually enjoy reading more, please, be my guest.

Jeremy Corbyn

I was shitting myself. Not gonna lie. Corbyn didn’t come out particularly well in his last interview with Andrew Neil, I was dreading this one. To my surprise however, he ultimately came out on top. He handled Paxman’s pressing with the surprising disarmament of a relaxed geography teacher. At one point he even joked at Paxman. Which, to extend my previous lion metaphor, that’s equivalent of putting your dick wrapped in bacon in the lions mouth. It was great. He came out well though, he was clear and strong on immigration, promising a Migrant Impact Fund for those areas affected by a strain on public services (an idea which needs to be stressed more in my honest, humble and ever important opinion) as well as refusing to put a figure on immigration, but predicting it would be lower.

Paxman tried pushing him on how the manifesto contained none of his ideas. Corbyn responded with “it’s a collective effort from the whole party,” which stuck with the audience. Paxman looked like he was pressing a dull point. The seasoned interrogator then turned to what would probably be his trump card, security. But Corbyn handled that extremely well, pushing his inclusive, peacemaker card right back at his opposing Jeremy.

Overall- quality performance with very few blunders. No major punches landed, but certainly none taken. Solid, and something Milne, McDonnell and the boys could be proud of. I’d expect to see more poll increases within the coming week. 8/10

Theresa May

It’s no secret that I hate Theresa May, so take this with a pinch of salt, I am not trying to mislead anyone. For the record, it’s not even like a “ah David Cameron is such a penis” kind of hate, I legitimately loathe the creature. It would thrill me to no end to see Paxman savage her in an interview. Sadly you can’t get everything you wish for.

She started off wobbly, and I got a bit excited, but she settled in eventually and I got less excited. The audience asked her some good questions which put Question Time to shame. When she was quizzed on why she’s cut schools and the police force I thought I was going to see my moment, but she pulled through, repeating her lie about record funding for education. Things got a bit wordy, and she looked rather uncomfortable, but she made it through. Then along came Paxman.

Paxman started off hard, he pressed her on her reputation, which is already damaged, and it worked. The biggest punch of the entire interview was landed when he stated that she would turn and cower at the first sight on gunfire when negotiating with the EU. I genuinely squeaked a wee bit. She was on the ropes, if I was Lynton Crosby I would’ve been job hunting. Paxman kept pushing May on her reputation: “you don’t know do you?” and “you still have no idea?” received great laughter from the audience. May also fell down around social care, she explained her dementia tax well enough, but it was long, it was wordy, and even I zoned out. As Ronald Reagan said- “if you’re explaining, you’re losing.”

But ultimately, May managed to pull herself off the ropes by the end of it. She genuinely looked strong and stable when quizzed on brexit. “No deal is better than a bad deal” had the rallying cry of a patriot behind it; the public would’ve loved that, no doubt.

Overall, there was nothing game changing. No blunders from both sides, no one will be getting fired tonight, and May hasn’t blown the biggest polling lead ever recorded just yet. Corbyn and his team will most likely be having a few more drinks then May’s tonight, but it’s just another step to Downing Street as far as they’re concerned.

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