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« Q4: Marriage and the family | Main | Q6: A 'Right-To-Die' »


Kate Castle

An excellent question, Tim. Nice to hear the contenders tackle a new subject. I'm veering towards agreeing with Cameron on this one.


Embryonic stem cell research?

I do hope you're going to publish the results of asking the candidates some questions that the British public actually care about...


Andrew: this issue may not matter to you but it does to some of us!

Earlier questions on compassion for society's most vulnerable people, lower taxation, cannabis and marriage are also vital issues.

A euthanasia question is up next! Environment, arms trade and party democracy etc still to come...


Both candidates seem to give a guarded "yes" to this, which to me is the right answer. I cannot personally accept that a ball of human cells [even though it has the potential to become a full human being] deserves the same protection as the fully developed version. The enormous good that this research could do therefore to me far outweighs the moral objections of the purists. For me there is no comparison whatsoever with the nazis activity.

Selsdon Man

What about welfare reform, health, education, pensions, renewal of our nuclear deterrent, globalisation, EU reform etc?


Okay - sorry - it was a bit petulant. I just don't think there is much point asking these questions on moral issues when we have the system of free votes in parliament to allow people to vote with their consciences. What the leader thinks doesn't matter, as he will be in no position to influence on this issue. And your scoring is again unfair on this - Cameron says he supports stem cell research, but that it should be adult stem cells where possible. That doesn't rule out the use of embryonic cells from new lines at all. From the wording they have used, both candidates seem to hold the exact same position.

Mark Fulford

Embyonic stem cells come from cultured blastocysts of around 50 to 100 cells. There is no organisation to a blastocyst and, at such an early stage, I do not agree that life has been created. There is no reason not to fully support this very hopeful research.


Thanks Andrew. I appreciate that.

You're right Selsdon Man. I could have asked many more questions but I focused on (1) those I personally wanted to raise (sorry!), (2) some of those emailed to me by readers, and (3) those not asked elsewhere or likely to be asked elsewhere.

Martin Curtis

Can I say that (IMHO) who "wins" should not be based on how compatible it is with the Editors views (which is what seems to be happening) but how they affect the chances of the Conservatives being elected, and the message they send about how suitable the individuals are ot be a leader and, eventually, a PM.


Cameron basically says nothing at all - DD says little. I'd probably do the same - too tricky, this one.

Ed R

I'm much more interested in the new policy area than areas like tax which, while important, have been raked through much thoroughly in the media already and don't necessarily offer any 'added value' to our understanding of the candidates. Good job, Editor!

Regarding the question, DD seems to eventually comes around to a similar position. But DC said it best and clearest.


Martin, to be fair it is a bit difficult to judge objectively how the responses affect our electoral chances - it has been clear from the other threads that there are many different views on this. The Editor gives his view on who wins with an explanation of why he thinks that. The debate then develops as people give reasons for agreeing or disagreeing. It isn't a bad launchpad for discussion, and it is pretty clear what the Editor is doing.


Why not just ask them how many times they go to Church and be done with it? This attempt to turn us into the Republican Party scares me to death.

Flippant remark

Good question, Ed! I'm waiting to hear the candidates views on the Low/High Newton Bypass Campaign.

Deckchair of despair

Editor - ignore the sneers. I for one am pleased that you are taking this opportunity to pose questions on some subjects which are otherwise unlikely to crop up during this campaign. This may be our only opportunity to discover what these two men think on these different subjects.
I can't quite see why you've given this one to Cameron, though. Personally, I was very impressed by Davis's answer.


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