Election 2015

Election 2015: 23 April at-a-glance

A daily guide to the key stories, newspaper headlines and quotes from the campaign for the 7 May general election.

Money, money, money

Sterling coins and banknotes Image copyright PA

Cash has been the main talking point of Thursday's campaign.

Do the main parties' sums add up? Not according to independent analysts, who reckon voters are "somewhere in the dark" over cuts that could be made by those most likely to end up either in government, or propping one up.

Day in a nutshell

  • Independent analysts at the Institute for Fiscal Studies say the Conservatives, Labour, Liberal Democrats and SNP have not provided "anything like full details" on plans to cut the deficit. They did not examine UKIP's plans
  • Office for National Statistics figures show government borrowing fell to £7.4bn in March, taking the total for the financial year to £87.3bn - beating the coalition's target
  • Liberal Democrats pledge a £150m support package for carers, including a £250 holiday bonus, as part of their disability manifesto
  • Lutfur Rahman has been removed as mayor of Tower Hamelts, in east London, and the poll that elected him declared void after he was found guilty of electoral fraud
  • The number of uncontested seats at some local elections has reached "epidemic proportions", according to the head of the UK's returning officers' organisation
  • The National Health Action Party unveils manifesto pledges to scrap prescription charges and raise income tax by 1p to boost NHS funding by £4.5bn a year

Keep up with all the days events on our live page.

Key quotes

  • IFS director Carl Emmerson: "The electorate has a real choice, although it can at best see only the broad outlines of that choice."
  • Conservative Chancellor George Osborne: "People know from us we have a balanced and clear plan to eliminate the deficit, to invest in our National Health Service and to make work pay for working people."
  • Labour leader Ed Miliband: "The Tories are committed to extreme spending plans. And they have also confirmed that Britain would be facing the deepest cuts of the next three years of any advanced country in the world."
  • Liberal Democrat David Laws: "We get the tick for being more transparent clearly than the other political parties."
  • John Swinney, SNP: "We're going to invest right away to make sure we have the necessary resources to end austerity and to start improving our public services."

Picture of the day

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Scottish Conservatives leader Ruth Davidson struggles to convince one piper to follow her tune

Thursday's newspaper headlines

"Boris eyes the top prize" - London Mayor Boris Johnson admits it would be "wonderful" to be seen as a candidate to lead the Conservatives, reports the Times

"From the Guardian? No way. Electioneering Tory-style" - the Guardian takes umbrage at being denied access to Mr Johnson, the Tories' "secret weapon"

"Miliband SNP pact would cost families £350 each" - the Daily Telegraph offers George Osborne's analysis of rivals' spending plans

"The Green betrayal" - scientists aren't happy that Green Party leader Natalie Bennett is failing to talk enough about climate change, says the Independent

Measuring up

Which party is fielding the most women? And which has seen its contingent of Parliamentary hopefuls dwindle from 338 to just eight since the last election? Find out in our explainer about the candidates in numbers.

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