Comment, GE2017

Why May won’t debate

After watching The Battle For Number 10, Question Time and the BBC Election Debate one thing has become clear; May doesn’t mix with politicians.

It seems our current Prime Minister and leader of the Conservative party doesn’t want to join in with the others. She has refused to debate with political candidates. She says squabbling with politicians is unproductive. She claims that instead, she is out as our Prime Minister, talking to the people.

But here’s the problem. Why does she class political debates as ‘squabbling’? Debating  political standpoints is not silly, it’s called a democracy. From watching five minutes of the BBC debate it was clear that politicians don’t let each other finish a sentence. But debating is part of the political process and unfortunately for May it won’t always be pretty. Debating amongst politicians is an uncomfortable environment, that as Prime Minister, she will have to exist in. If she doesn’t like talking to politicians she is in the wrong profession. 

May says she will talk to the people but not politicians. She agreed to appear on Question Time to answer the public’s questions but she refused to talk to her competition in the BBC debate. Instead she sent Home secretary Amber Rudd. If her objection is politicians squabbling, sending Amber Rudd is no different to going herself. I don’t buy the excuses. May could just about cope with a controlled public audience politely asking questions but a seven way debate is something else. I think the reason May won’t is because she can’t.

Just listen to her. Repetition is expected in political rhetoric but I have heard “No deal is better than a bad deal” one too many times. It is well known that if you say something more than once and it rhymes, the public will remember it. This is why I can sing the Autoglass jingle and remember Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign slogan more easily than my brother’s birthday. However, the exhaustion of these phrases has left them redundant and simply empty words used to fill airtime. Let’s not even mention strong and stable because her public speaking certainly isn’t. This is why she won’t debate, because if she forgets a line her scripted stability will fall apart.

Theresa May has every right to refuse to debate. But doing so doesn’t inspire confidence. If you had a job offer, you couldn’t sit out of the phone interview because you think your time would be better spent elsewhere and you prefer texting. The same should apply to running for Prime Minister; you don’t get to pick when you turn up.

If she can’t lead a debate how can she to lead a country?


About Author


Notice: Trying to access array offset on value of type null in /home/wp_35pmrq/ on line 11

Notice: Trying to access array offset on value of type null in /home/wp_35pmrq/ on line 26
January 2022
Latest Comments
About Us

The University of East Anglia’s official student newspaper. Concrete is in print and online.

If you would like to get in touch, email the Editor on Follow us at @ConcreteUEA.