Afternoon Politics Briefing, May 3

As we move to a day before voters go to the ballot box for local council and mayoral elections in South Yorkshire, it’s been another day of national politicians being tied up by their own words.

Baker’s Barrage

In a moment that will remind many of Gordon Brown and Gillian Duffy’s exchange, or for those more hardened anoraks out there, Sharron Storer’s tustle with Tony Blair in 2001. Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron was verbally pinned down by birthday-boy Malcolm Baker in Oxfordshire.

Malcolm gave Tim everything he had, and it will provide another memorable clip for the General Election. The duo made up, but does Malcolm express the frustrations of many Brexiteers with Remoaners?

Not such a mass debate

ITV have announced their leaders’ debate will take place on Thursday 18 May, although Jeremy Corbyn and Theresa May are still not intending to take part.

It will be hosted by ITV News presenter Julie Etchingham, who undertook the role in 2010 and 2015. However if the leaders of the two major parties (before the election at least) are not taking part, is there any likelihood of the electorate staying up to watch Tim Farron or Paul Nuttall square off for a dust-up that Mike Hookem would be proud of?

Or are we about to see a resurgence in Horlicks sales? Shares in GlaxoKlineSmith have never looked so appealing.

May’s disillusioned Parliament

In a move that always plays well to viewers at home, the Prime Minister visited the Queen for a chat to dissolve Parliament. Not literally, that would increase the already rocketing costs of Westminster’s redevelopment. You May think that at 91, the Queen’s cooking days may be long behind her, but in Brexit Britain there’s a role for everyone. Even if it is just making cucumber sandwiches.

Alas, May returned to Downing Street with a stomach full of food, primed for an attack on the EU. Using rhetoric that Donald Trump would be proud of (perhaps he held her hand while she wrote it), she accused the EU of threatening the UK in order to affect the result of the General Election. Perhaps a fair assessment, but not something that is likely to foster a beneficial exit deal for Britain.

If she was more TV-friendly, perhaps Channel 4 could run a special Friday night show with Noel Edmonds hosting. Either way, the PM would be happy with a special Deal, or No Deal.

In South Yorkshire

We’ll be reporting from the Doncaster Mayoral count tomorrow, with incumbent Ros Jones facing competition from Conservative George Jabbour, Independent Eddie Todd, UKIP’s Brian Whitmore, TUSC’s Steve Williams, and Yorkshire Party candidate Chris Whitwood.

Follow the website, and social media for updates from 10pm, when the count begins. Results are expected at 4am.