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Which Leader Will Win the TV Debates?

It was never going to come as surprise that the rest of the world would be indifferent to the outcome of the UK election result. What has come as something of a surprise is that much of Britain is also indifferent to the result of the May 6th vote.

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Sharon Lorimer

A new poll released Wednesday by Populous for the Times newspaper shows the Conservative lead has fallen to just 3 points over the ruling Labour Party, making a hung parliament the most likely result if mirrored at the polling stations next month.

This poll could very well be an outlier given the Conservative lead has been around 6-8 points in recent weeks and does not take into account this week's manifesto launches by both parties.

On Thursday Gordon Brown, David Cameron and the Liberal Party leader Nick Clegg will go in front of the electorate for the first of three US-style TV debates that commentators say could sway the outcome of the election.

The received wisdom is that David Cameron will be the strongest of the three leaders, given his oratory skills and Gordon Brown's lack of them.

Nick Clegg is also seen as a winner as he just has to turn up to get more coverage than Britain's third party could normally hope for.

With the polls so tight, these debates, which will happen every Thursday until the UK goes to the polls, will be important. Whether they will be a game changer is open to question though.

For those hoping for a clear Conservative majority the debates could be disappointing. In recent weeks the pound has been moving higher on polls that show a Conservative majority and lower on anything that points to a hung Parliament.

The TV debates could do very little to change people's perceptions and could actually play into Gordon Brown's favor.

When everyone expects you to be weak, it is easier to beat forecasts. Remember Brown is a life long politician and will be working hard on his performance.

If he can manage a score draw with Cameron on Thursday and in the next two debates, he could come out looking like the winner.