Is Vote Leave saving the biggest push until last?

EU flag and Union Jack flying side by side Image copyright Reuters

Campaigns have got two choices as the date of any vote nears - narrow the message more and more tightly down to one issue, one argument, one sound bite or slogan. The logic of that is clear - focus on your best bits and shout about them as loudly as you can.

But there's a different way - keep adding to what might cringingly be called "the offer", in the hope that a slow reveal of ideas will gradually get voters on your side. Essentially, save the best until last.

After the entirely predictable economic bludgeoning of the Vote Leave campaign by the other side, which has all the might of the government machine, it's now clear that rather than try to retaliate with all of their goodies, Outers were keeping some in the cupboard for this moment.

Witness today's plan for cutting VAT on energy bills if we left the EU. And tomorrow, a message that the campaign, buoyed by some recent nudges towards them in the polls, believes will pack even more punch.

On Wednesday, senior Outers will be on the road outlining how they claim they'd control immigration if we left the EU - by introducing a points system that would determine if people can come to live in Britain for every single wannabe immigrant.

The system is already in place for people who aren't part of the EU, but currently, the country has no way of limiting the total numbers of people who want to come here from around the continent. It would be an enormous change, and a system they believe would get wide public support.

The Remainers are bound, though, to warn again of the risks of leaving the EU. If we're out of the single market, so can leave behind the free movement of people, they'd argue the hit to the economy would be much more painful than any potential gains from controlling immigration.

What's also becoming more intriguing by the day is how the Vote Leave's top team, notably Boris Johnson and Michael Gove, seem to be announcing policies for post-referendum government that of course, does not yet exist.

What on earth can they be up to? With this whole campaign intricately laced with Tory leadership ambitions, it's not very hard to imagine. The messages from the Out team come from politicians who fully expect big roles in the aftermath of the vote, whatever happens.

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