- David Cameron visits the four UK nations in one day
- Ed Miliband spends the day in Bristol focusing on health
- Nick Clegg attacks Labour and Conservatives
- Nicola Sturgeon sets out plan to combat child poverty while key campaigner defects to Labour
- Nigel Farage presents plan for veterans and defence in the West Midlands
- Leanne Wood campaigns in north Wales as Plaid Cymru launches farming mini-manifesto
- Natalie Bennett is called by the wrong name at Radio 4’s Today programme
David Cameron visits all four UK nations in one day
David Cameron has started the day having breakfast at insurance and pensions company Scottish Widows headquarters in Edinburgh.
He’s later flown to Belfast, where he’s been received by Northern Ireland secretary Theresa Villiers.
He has paid a visit to the set of Game of Thrones at Titanic studios in Belfast.
Speaking to reporters in Belfast he said he’s campaigning for an all-out Conservative majority:
I am going to fight for the majority that I think we can win and I think the country needs and I think the country needs because there would be a more accountable and more decisive government.
Then he went to Wales, where he and his wife Samantha have been taught to make pies at Brains Brewer.
Mr Cameron has finished the day in Cornwall, where he’s spoken about home ownership, education and provisions for pensioners.
Labour leader Ed Miliband spends the day in Bristol focusing on health
Mr Miliband has said that the failure of hospital A&E departments to meet their waiting time target for six months in a row shows that the NHS can’t improve while it keeps getting harder to see a GP.
The NHS cannot go forward if queues to see your GP are stretching backwards and I believe that Britain can do a lot better than people waiting day after day for basic healthcare. That’s what our plan will do.
Ed Miliband has also attacked the Conservatives for repeating claims that Labour would increase taxes on working families by more than £3,000.
The figures they are basing it on are made up and the Institute for Fiscal Studies, a respected, independent organisation, themselves criticise those figures.
Mr Miliband claimed it showed the Conservatives have ‘got nothing to say about the future of our country.’
I think it is the most negative, poor, pathetic campaign being run by the Conservative party.
Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg attacks Conservatives and Labour
Nick Clegg has said David Cameron would be ‘in hock’ to Ukip and the Tory right wing if Liberal Democrats did not form part of a post-election coalition.
After being dismissed as the head of a minor party by David Cameron, Mr Clegg said:
The remarkable thing I find about the Conservatives is that here’s a party that’s awash with money, has got unalloyed support from vast swathes of the British press, and they still are not going to win this election.
And do you know what that means? It means that David Cameron, whatever he says – whatever his bravura rhetoric might imply – is going to be in hock to Nigel Farage and the right wing of the Conservative Party.
The Lib Dems claim the Conservatives will be forced to cut 10,000 police officers, 28,000 carers and 25,000 military personnel to pay for the tax cuts they’ve promised. Mr Clegg said:
To find that money they will have to do what Tories do best – cut. Gone are the days of compassionate conservatism. Now they promise to cut and cut and cut. Not because they have to but because they want to.
Mr Clegg has later gone to Stockport (Greater Manchester), where he’s visited the NK Theatre Arts charity in Hazel Grove.
He said watching the youngsters at the theatre reminded him of his time in amateur dramatics at Westminster School.
Mr Clegg has attacked Michael Gove’s time as education secretary:
I remember when I thought “This is just getting absurd“ when someone explained to me that Michael Gove was personally handwriting lists of which medieval kings British schoolchildren should learn, according to his personal recollection of which kings and queens are important.
I’m afraid this happens in government, I’ve seen this, where a secretary of state, it all slightly goes to their head, they think it’s their personal fiefdom or their personal gift.
He’s also criticised Labour’s Andy Burnham, calling him a ‘cardboard cut-out politician’.
I heard Andy Burnham on the radio this morning making a ridiculous claim that we, the Lib Dems, don’t have a plan to meet the funding gap for the NHS when we do.
He is a slightly cardboard cut-out and rather silly Labour politician who seems to think that if you have Labour politicians in the Department of Health the sun will shine perpetually and all will be well.
SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon sets out plan to combat child poverty while key campaigner defects to Labour
Nicola Sturgeon appeared this morning in Livingston and said that ‘the UK Government’s current plans will see one million additional children across the UK grow up in poverty, 100,000 of whom will be in Scotland’.
That is a damning statistic and one that must be addressed, yet Labour are failing to offer an alternative.
A strong team of SNP MPs will be a powerful voice for Scotland at Westminster – demanding action to tackle the scourge of child poverty, because no child should have to grow up in poverty in this rich country.
Meanwhile, SNP independence campaigner Muhammad Shoaib has confirmed he’s defected to the Labour Party.
In a letter addressed to Nicola Sturgeon he said:
I’m proud of the part I played in the referendum campaign, I was proud to have shared a platform with you and others in the Yes campaign but I have serious concern about the SNP strategy to support the Green Party in England and Plaid Cymru in Wales.
The above strategy clearly means that the Labour Party could lose seats and the end result will be that the Conservative Party will be in power for the next five years.
I cannot support this policy. Scotland will suffer due to austerity measures the Conservatives will introduce if they form the next government.
UKIP leader Nigel Farage visits the West Midlands and presents plan for veterans and defence
Nigel Farage missed his first appointment of the day at a farm in Staffordshire due to travel delays.
But he’s later visited Bird and Yates Garage in Cannock and the Express & Star offices in Wolverhampton.
Mr Farage has finished the day enjoying cupcakes in Dudley.
He later said that ‘defence really does matter. It is very important’ and calling for a veterans administration separated from the Ministry of Defence and operating at cabinet level.
He said UKIP is committed to maintaining an army 100,000 strong and defence expenditure at 2 per cent GDP.
Speaking to reporters, he said UKIP’s performance in the polls had slipped back to where it stood after last year’s European elections ’14 and a bit per cent’.
We’ve slipped back a bit since then, there are 30 days to go and I think the issues UKIP is campaigning on are back in play.
Leanne Wood campaigns in north Wales as Plaid Cymru launches farming mini-manifesto
Candidate for Ynys Mon, John Rowlands, has launched Plaid Cymru’s farming mini-manifesto:
Plaid Cymru will work to make sure CAP works for Welsh farmers and that all farmers receive their basic payments as early as possible within the payment window.
We want to see more public bodies procuring food and drink sourcing more of their products locally in order to support Welsh farmers and local jobs.
Green Party leader Natalie Bennett is called by the wrong name on Radio 4’s Today programme
Natalie Bennett has laughed off being called ‘Caroline Lucas’ by broadcaster John Humphrys in an interview on Today at BBC Radio 4. He apologised saying it was a ‘Freudian slip’.
While Britain’s leading news breakfast programme appears to be confused about who is who in the Green Party, the Greens are claiming the fasted and most rapid recruitment of new members.
700 in the past week and 50,000 over the last year.