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Up until recently, the battle for number ten has circled around the Conservatives, Labour and Liberal Democrats. Other parties haven’t stood a chance. However, the lead up to the 2015 General Election has seen a considerable shift in who the nation trusts to lead Britain. People have become less convinced by the top three players and instead have rallied for new management.I think that since the coalition, people have started to take more notice of minority parties because they now see that there doesn’t have to be just one frontrunner. This has put more pressure on leaders to deliver because it’s become highly unpredictable whom the electorate will vote for. Some parties are more burdened by this more than others, the Lib Dems have taken a particularly large hit due to Nick Clegg’s lack of noticeable impact throughout his entire term as Deputy PM. Did he really bring anything to the table? Was he just David Cameron’s lapdog? I don’t think anyone could give that a straight answer.
UKIP ignited the nations sudden interest in minority parties during early 2014. Previously holding 0 seats in parliament, UKIP were a completely wasted vote for many but since the media set out to shame Nigel Farage, UKIP has been hyped more and more in the news. Everyone is talking about them or knows about them. UKIP has, surprisingly, formed a massive following since then to the point where they ranked equally with Conservatives and Labour in the 7-way debate polls on ITV. Farage’s approach to Government policy raises questions about the ‘mainstream’ approach to politics and economic spending. Would ceasing immigration and leaving the EU solve the UK’s problems? Evidence shows that many people think so. UKIP is definitely one to watch – no doubt about it.
SNP has also seen a rise in public interest. After the Scottish Referendum, SNP hasn’t seemed to disappear from our peripheral vision. Where public opinion remains divided about UKIP, SNP has yet to cause such controversy. Largely positive, Nicola Sturgeon’s campaign has seen some great progress with talks of it possibly overtaking the Liberal Democrats in the polls. This could lead to Clegg and Sturgeon fighting it out for the next Coalition Government, which is surprising seeing as this time last year they were a laughable threat. SNP is breaking through political barriers like there’s no tomorrow and it doesn’t look like they’re slowing down any time soon.
All other parties remain in the dark, but nonetheless these examples show how much influence the public have on politics. UKIP and SNP wouldn’t be in the position they are now without the backing of the people and that only reiterates the level of importance and power everyone’s votes have on Britain. Make sure you have your say on May 7th by voting for whomever you believe will make Great Britain remain just that – great.