Nick Clegg accuses Tories of “crude form of blackmail”

by Stephen Tall on March 8, 2010

As the prospect of a hung parliament looms larger, it’s crystal clear the Lib Dem leadership is determined to shoot down early Tory claims that the financial markets will react badly to no one party having an overall majority.

Last month, it was deputy leader Vince Cable – regarded by many voters as the best choice of Chancellor – who stressed that “Our own approach to fiscal policy is at least as robust as that of any other party.”

And now today, in a speech to party workers, Nick Clegg will accuse the Tories of ‘a crude form of blackmail’ by encouraging fears of a fall in the stock market.

The Conservatives are so desperate that they have resorted to a crude form of blackmail. David Cameron and George Osborne are stoking up fears in the markets, actively trying to destabilise the pound and reduce the Government’s ability to borrow. It’s like a protection racket: vote for us or our friends in the City will lay waste to your economy, your savings and your job.

“There is nothing positive in the Conservatives’ election strategy. It’s built entirely on the hatred of Gordon Brown, stoking up fears of a broken society and now threatening economic meltdown. It’s a strategy that is completely negative and without hope, and it’s becoming increasingly obvious that people aren’t going to fall for it.”

Strong stuff, fair stuff. But do LDV readers think there’s a possibility the British public will in reality be put off voting Lib Dem out of fear of what might happen in a hung parliament?