The 2019 general election campaign has seen several political debates, but on Monday night, a special edition of Question Time was held with an audience of under-30s grilling politicians about the issues affecting them. The panel of politicians including Nigel Farage, leader of the Brexit Party, Jo Swinson, leader of the Liberal Democrats, Robert Jenrick, secretary of state for housing, communities and local government, Angela Rayner, shadow education secretary, Humza Yousaf MSP, justice secretary in the Scottish government, Adam Price AM, leader of Plaid Cymru, and Jonathan Bartley, co-leader of the Green Party of England and Wales faced off in front of these younger voters. Express.co.uk has compiled a round-up of who was crowned the winner of the under-30s debate?
The BBC’s Emma Barnett led Monday’s debate which began with a question about electoral reform.
The questioner posed to the panel was about voting reform, asking how her voice could be heard in a safe seat constituency when her vote will not change the end result.
Leader of the Brexit Party, Nigel Farage said he wished to modernise the current voting system.
He spoke of his 2015 campaign for UKIP, whereby he received the most votes for “the least reform”.
In 2015, UKIP won 3.8 million votes but failed to win in the First Past the Post electoral system, gaining just one MP position.
The question of Mr Farage’s peerage offer was raised where he fundamentally underlined he would never accept a peerage, adding he would not name the individual who made the offer but would submit to any Metropolitan Police investigation.
Mr Jenrick aid people should always vote because “generations have fought for the right”, adding this election “feels like the most important in my lifetime.”
Green Party co-leader Mr Bartley added: “We’ve never had a vote in this country on a proportional system.
“If we’ve seen anything with the paralysis in Parliament over the last three years, it’s that we’ve got a broken system.”
BBC Question Time debate: Which party came up on top on the under-30s debate?
BBC Question Time debate:
The next topic to be raised by an audience member was levied at Jo Swinson.
The questioner asked: “How can it be democratic to have a second referendum on EU membership for implementing the result of the first?”
The Labour Party‘s Ms Rayner was questioned on the Labour Party’s refusal to choose a side on Brexit.
Ms Swinson said: “I want to stop Brexit, I will not apologise for that.”
Pressed on whether it’s anti-democratic, she says: “I’m pro-European…I’m not going to change my beliefs.”
When asked whether her choice was undemocratic, Mr Jenrick asked the Liberal Democrats leader why she desired a second referendum “when you have no intention of listening to the result”.
Ms Barnett asked if Mr Farage and his party was ready to “die on its sword” if the Conservatives won on Thursday.
Mr Farage responded that the current deal would mean the Brexit Party would be required once again quickly, however, his party would fall by the wayside if Boris Johnson negotiated a better Brexit deal.
BBC Question Time debate: Jo Swinson, Nigel Farage and Robert Jenrick
One audience member asked the Brexit Party leader how he intends to vote on polling day.
Mr Farage said he does not have a Brexit Party campaigning in his own constituency and he responded that he intends to spoil his vote.
He said: “I wanted to believe Boris when they said they were going for a Canada-style deal, I liked it.”
He added that he could not support the Conservative Party because the current deal is “not Brexit”.
Ms Swinson said his dislike of Mr Johnson’s deal underlined why a second referendum should be held.
She said: “The Brexiteers can’t even agree among themselves… that’s why the specific deal needs to go back to the people.”
However, Mr Farage said people had already made their decision and the decision should have been honoured much earlier.
Cheers erupted from the crowd when Angela Rayner accused Nigel Farage of dog-whistle politics, calling the Brexit Party leader a “disgrace” who peddles “hate”.
Mr Farage, when accused of being a racist politics, he levied anti-semitism accusations of Ms Rayner.
He said: “You want to wake up and smell the coffee.”
The topic of climate change was another important issue with the under-30s debate.
Mr Farage said stopping meat consumption was not an effective way to tackle climate change, because well-kept pastures for cows and sheep “absorb carbon dioxide”.
The BBC’s environment analyst, Roger Harrabin, said Mr Farage is correct, “but there is a limit”.
He told the BBC: “It’s impossible to ignore methane. Scientists say there is no other way to explain recent temperatures other than manmade CO2.”
BBC Question Time debate: Adam Price, Humza Yousaf, Angela Rayner and Adam Price were on Question Time on Monday
The subject of trust was another key question posed to each of the politicians.
Plaid Cymru leader, Mr Price said he planned to table a bill to make lying by politicians a criminal offence.
Mr Farage said he planned to reform the UK’s political system, to bring back faith in representative, to eliminate postal fraud ballots and remove the House of Lords.
Ms Rayner said she would not lie and would call out those who do.
Mr Jenrick promised to deliver the outcome of the 2016 referendum and deliver Brexit by January 31.
Ms Swinson said she would stick to her principles of remaining an EU member whether or not it was popular or not.
Mr Yousaf said he would fulfil the promises and mandates of the manifesto he stood on.
Mr Bartley said he planned to lift the limits on the fines of the electoral commission so parties can be fined high amounts for lies.
Across social media, opinions on who did best during the debate were highly split.
One person tweeted: “Angela Raynor is increasing her chances of become a more significant player in the Labour part post the election while single handedly showing why they no longer represent the public #questiontime”.
Another person agreed: “#questiontime Angela Raynor is displaying everything wrong with Politics, refusing to let people speak and talking over everything she disagrees with ! #getridofallofthem#whatishappeningtopolitics #unprofessional”.
One person tweeted: “Farage; gives his opinions on how the country should be managed, economy/health/industry etc, yet he has absolutely no experience or working insight of the UK government. He failed 7 times to be elected as an MP #questiontime”.
Another added: “Not sure who’s causing the most damage to their own party here, @RobertJenrick or @AngelaRayner. This whole election is about voting for the ‘least shit’ party rather than the one we can believe in and trust. #questiontime #GE2019″.
One person wrote on Facebook: “Watching Question time Election Special on BBC one Right now. Boris Johnson is Right Another Hung Parliament will be more years of endless Arguments and Chaos. None of the Parties are putting the Country First its just endless Infighting.. Only A Conservative Majority will get Brexit done. Let’s get Brexit done so we can move on. #Conservatives #VoteTory #BackBoris #Unite2Leave #MakeYourVoteCount”.
Another person tweeted: “Listening to #JoSwinson on #questiontime. How many times can you say the same s**t about having another referendum over Brexit? The referendum has taken place. The only thing the country is waiting on is a government making it happen DEAL OR NO DEAL. We should be out!!!!!”