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Alexander: Brown will 'be himself' for leaders debate

By Channel 4 News

Updated on 19 April 2010

Labour's campaigning tsar says Gordon Brown will "be himself" and will not alter his tactics in a bid to tackle the rising threat of the Liberal Democrats.

Channel 4 News interviews Douglas Alexander on Twitter

Douglas Alexander, the man with the plan behind the Labour election strategy, has brushed off Nick Clegg's meteoric rise in recent election polls in a 'Twinterview' with Channel 4 News presenter Krishnan Guru-Murthy.

Labour has "the same plan - Gordon will be himself", he said, adding that the Conservative Party had more to fear.

Alexander, who is secretary of state for International Development, said he "always sensed this election would open up". The interview also covered foreign policy, marriage and immigration.

For a full transcript see below.

Douglas Alexander was taking part in the second second live 'Twinterview' of the election campaign by Channel 4 News. Last week it was the turn of shadow housing minister Grant Shapps.

Hi Douglas - are you there and ready?

Come in Douglas - are you there?

yes am here now


great. welcome. So why are you doing so badly in the polls?


we've come thru a financial & political crisis - but the election's now becoming not a referendum but a choice - we welcome that


Are you worried about the new threat from the Lib Dems? Or is it a passing phase for voters after the debate?


i always sensed this election would open up.This campaign still has a long way to run involving different choices about the future


Have tactics changed for this Thursday's debate - or is it the same plan?


same plan - Gordon will be himself. My sense it's the Tories who will be most worried about style and substance


thats pretty vague on LIb Dems. Do u think people are being deceived, the way you thought buleaders were by the Tories

that was businessleaders, by the way


- sorry didn't understand that one - can you repeat?


sorry on being deceived i meant : you said business leaders were tricked by the Tories. are voters now tricked by Lib Dems? 


people were impressed by Clegg's style. My sense is focus will now move from style and tactics to substance and future plans.


but on the debate Lib Dems on strong ground with foreign affairs surely? Their anti-war stance on Iraq will win them points


thought one of GB's best answers was on Afghanistan last Thursday. He wasn't the one slipping up on Bulgaria and China!


Is it not something of a scandal that the war in Afghanistan is not featuring in this election?


u clearly weren't covering the event with PM, ForSec, DefSec and myself on Saturday,or events ForSec doing regularly on Afghanistan 


Journalists have been prevented from reporting with the British forces for duration of campaign - surely wrong?


news to me that that's the case


Well would you accept that it would be wrong to prevent journalists reporting with British forces during the campaign? 
the Tories have ring fenced Overseas Aid budget - they are not a threat to International Development policy are they?


don't take my word for it - there's "no consensus" on development policy says leading campaigners


do you have respect for your shadow Andrew Mitchell in this area - he is pretty well thought of isn't he?


suggest you speak to Cabinet Office and MOD about any guidance issued


well I was asking you for an answer on the principle of reporting war during election - but ok if u don't want to go there DA

he spent more time praising Thatcher than talking about climate change at our last debate-sounds like wrong priorities to me KGM

Do you think the war in Iraq made it a better or worse place?


next 7 years are as important as the last to Iraq's future.Saw big changes for the better on last visit & welcome recent elections


hmmm - that's a bit of a dodge! What about the tens of thousands killed ? Worth it?


every life lost a tragedy


OK - lets change the subject. A couple of quick fire ones now: Are there too many immigrants in Britain?


immigration has enriched our culture and economy over centuries - net inward migration now falling  


Do you think marriage is better than co-habitation? 


i'm married myself but modern families come in all shapes and sizes - priority is to address family need not family structure KGM

Do you support gay couples getting the same rights to adopt children as heterosexual couples?



what was the last music album you bought?


Eddi Reader!


many thanks - our time is up. speak again soon. 


Thanks that was fun.

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