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Nick Clegg has it and David Cameron lacks it

April 21st, 2009 Posted in UK Politics by

The fallout of Smeargate has seen a marked and welcome upswing in the LibDem poll ratings – averaging out at around the 20% mark rather than bobbling around in the mid-high teens. Today’s Ipsos MORI poll shows the party within six points of Labour. And all of this is against a backdrop of fairly limited LibDem coverage over the whole Dolly Draper-Mad Dog McBride scandal.The Tories have pretty much flatlined.

However bad sleaze is for the wider body politic, it seems to encourage people to plump for the LibDems. Nick Clegg’s easy television manner and the fact that you can’t really picture the bloke up to his eyeballs in corruption (or even up to his ankles) can only help. Although Nick is, I think, the only mainstream to have confessed to a “crime” (he rather endearingly admits to having over-stepped the mark in a practical joke involving a greenhouse in Germany as a boy), it was hardly grand theft auto.

Although Cameron has done much to revive the fortuens of the Conservatives, the polls from the Smeargate fallout suggest he hasn’t decontaminated the Tory brand.  Nick Clegg and the LibDems seem to have the ability to capitalise on sleaze. Cameron’s Tories just don’t.

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