The tories have everything to lose from a TV debate.

A TV debate including the leaders of the main political parties: Labour, Conservatives and Liberal Democrats will take place next year. Other smaller parties have been excluded: the SNP, Plaid Cymru and UKIP. Will the TV debate offer Brown a lifeline and be a didsater for the Consevatives?

The tories have everything to lose from a TV debate.

Yes because... No because...

The Conservatives are currently ahead in the polls

The TV debate is a huge gamble for David Cameron, his party is currently ahead in the polls. He has to try to convince the public that his party should win the next election and that he is the right person to be Prime Minister.

Labour are hoping that the TV debate will be a good oppertunity of exposing David Cameron's weakenesses. Labour view him as inexperienced.

As Mike Smithson in the New Statesman says: "The big loser could be David Cameron who in my opinion has made a seriously bad decision." The TV debate could offer Gordon Brown the lifeline that he needs. David Cameron has appeared weak in debates before, when he took part in the leadership contest against David Davies, he did not come out on top. But, he did become leader of the Conservative party, not Davies.

The tories have everything to lose from a TV debate.

Yes because... No because...

The TV debate is good for Labour and especially for the Liberal Democrats

The Liberal Democrats have been included in the debate. This demonstrates that British politics is changing from a two-party system to a third party one. More people are choosing to vote Liberal Democrat and they have become more popular over the years.

Liberal Democrat leader, Nick Clegg views the TV debate as a "very good thing." Charlie Becket in the New Statesman says "As for Nick Clegg, he will be delighted with the attention." The inclusion of the Liberal Democrats may be a sign that the two main political parties are beginning to take them seriously.

Tim Mongomerie, editor of the Conservative Home website said in the Guardian: The TV debate "will be a big boost for Nick Glegg. He will be given the status that the third party in British politics has never had before." The debate will be risky for the Conservatives as they do not want voters to view the Liberal Democrats as an alternative to voting Labour.

For Labour, the TV debate will offer an oppertunity for Gordon Brown to remind voters of the achievements of the past twelve years.

The TV debate is a huge gamble for Gordon Brown and Labour. Gordon Brown does not tend to do well on his own. In Parliament he can rely on the support of backbenchers but in the debate he will have to stand on his own.

Voters view him as a "charmless man" and this may show on the TV debate, thus giving David Cameron an advantage.

The tories have everything to lose from a TV debate.

Yes because... No because...

The biggest losers from the TV debate are the parties that have been excluded from taking part.

A number of smaller parties have not been asked to take part in the TV debate.

The SNP have reacted in anger to being excluded from the TV debate. Alex Salmond, leader of the SNP views it as an attempt the rig the election. The party is considering legal action.

However, many politicians do not agree with Salmond. He is not standing for Westminister and the party have no chance of forming the next UK government. They are a regional party. One politican, Labour MP Anne McGuire called Alex Salmond a "desperate man". She also pointed out that he is not a candidate for Prime Minister. Liberal Democat leader, Tavish Scott called Mr Salmond "undemocratic".

Plaid Cymru is also considering seeking legal advice as they have been left out of the TV debate also. Elfyn Llwyd, the leader of the party views the exclusion as putting the party at an "electoral disadvantage."

Separate debates are expected to be taken in Scotlnad, Wales and Northern Ireland in addition to the three main ones which will be aired on ITV, Sky and the BBC.

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