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BBC TwoThe Daily Politics


Last Updated: Tuesday, 26 September 2006, 11:45 GMT 12:45 UK
Perception Panel: Gordon Brown
Daily Politics Perception Panel

The Perception Panel measures how you the viewers react to the big conference speeches - in real time! We're the first TV programme in the world to do this, and we want you to get involved: call 0800 666 808 for more details, or read on...

We've brought back the Perception Panel that proved popular during last year's conference and PMQs - so popular, in fact, that you pushed the system to its very limits - and then some!

This year, we're ready for you, and we're interested in how you're responding to three of the men who would be PM - and the one who is.

The speeches in question are Menzies Campbell's (Sept 21st), Gordon Brown's (Sept 25th), Tony Blair's (Sept 26th) and David Cameron's (Oct 4th).

From the comfort of your armchair you can tell us whether you're loving or hating what the big guns are saying -- as they're saying it.

How does it work?

About ten minutes before the speech, we'll ask you to use your landline telephone to ring the freephone number 0800 666 808. Then Jenny will ask you a few questions - but she'll go easier on you than she does on our guests!

Which buttons do I press?
Daily Politics Perception Panel
If you like what's said: 5
If you dislike what's said: 8
You tell us a little bit about yourself and then stay on the line. While you watch the speeches, you push numbers on your telephone keypad to tell us if you're feeling negative or positive about what is being said.

We then frantically crunch the numbers and before the end of the programme, our snazzy graphs show what you made of the exchange.

Gordon Brown
Monday September 25th: Gordon Brown

We thought that the Chancellor's speech would be a crucial part of conference, and you agreed, ringing the Perception Panel in your hundreds.

We saw many interesting responses, and broke them down according to your location, gender, age and party affiliation.

Perception Panel: Gordon Brown's conference speech
"My experience and my values"

We looked first at the passage where Gordon Brown stated clearly his wish to be Prime Minister.

And I am confident that my experience and my values gives me the strength to take the tough decisions.

I would relish the opportunity to take on David Cameron and the Conservative Party.

And in that endeavour I would be determined to draw on all the talents of our party and country.

Labour voters among you were still happy even when Brown stopped speaking. But those of you who don't support any of the main three parties were not as convinced. They make up 50% of the population; some say it's these people that Brown needs to appeal to as well as party members, and it's not clear that he did.

Perception Panel: Gordon Brown's conference speech
"No hiding place for terrorist finance"

Terrorism was an issue that was bound to turn up in the speech, since it seems sure to be part of the agenda if Gordon Brown should become PM.

Take terrorism.

Let me promise: as a government, as John Reid and Des Browne have said, we will take any necessary steps and find all necessary resources to ensure whether in Iraq, Afghanistan or anywhere else there is no safe haven for terrorists and no hiding place for terrorist finance.

This passage went down markedly better with women than it did with men - a trend that we noticed throughout the entire speech.

Perception Panel: Gordon Brown's conference speech
"The purpose of independence"

Another notable point of the speech was when the Chancellor declared himself not to be a centrist, which was rapidly picked up on by many commentators - and your response was no less striking.

The purpose of independence for the Bank of England, the FSA and the Competition Commission was to devolve power and separate the making of public policy from the independent administration of daily business.

And I believe we must now examine how elsewhere we can separate the decisions that in a democracy, elected politicians must make from the business of day to day administration.

Those of you in the North liked that passage, and those of you in the Midlands liked it a lot - but the South didn't like it at all - another signal from a part of the electorate that Brown needs to appeal to.

Stay in touch

Be ready on Tuesday 26th to dial 0800 666 808 and tell us what you make of Tony Blair's speech.

If you have anything to tell us about the Perception Panel, or any other aspect of The Daily Politics, please do email us at daily.politics@bbc.co.uk or use the form below.

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Disclaimer: The BBC may edit your comments and cannot guarantee that all emails will be published.

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