The economy: Many people say that the Conservatives are more reliable when it comes to the economy. Austerity will continue and they will reduce the deficit more quickly. But during the campaign, David Cameron (along with the other party leaders admittedly) has been happy to throw around promises of more money into parts of the economy where he thinks he will gain votes. No-one on either side is telling us exactly where all the money is going to come from, but what seems clear is that the Conservatives are the party of the rich. The only thing they are definite about cutting is welfare. I would rather have a government with a bias to the poor, even if I don’t entirely trust that things will work out exactly as they promise.
Education: Free schools are a joke. To have a decent state education system throughout the country our local authorities need to be able to plan for the schools in their area. The Tories seem to prefer to resource the over-provision of school places in areas where parents are affluent and motivated. The poor will get poorer and social mobility will be harder to achieve.
Europe: Let’s stay a country with meaningful international links. Don’t allow UKIP and those influenced by their politics of suspicion to make us isolationist.
There are other issues of course. At the start of this campaign I admit I was not at all impressed with the Eds, but Mr Milliband has grown on me in the last few weeks since that first leaders’ debate when he looked like an automaton. He has managed to start behaving naturally, looking human and sounding like a conviction politician.
And I am impressed by our local candidate. At our hustings, Malcolm Fincken appeared personable, approachable, sensible, well informed about local and national issues, and I think he will make an excellent constituency MP. I hope he gets the chance to prove me right.