David Cameron edges the first TV 'debate' over Ed Miliband as the 2015 race for Downing Street well and truly got underway.

David Cameron

David Cameron

The television debate schedule has FINALLY been sorted and the first political broadcast feature Cameron and Miliband - the only two leaders with a realistic chance of becoming Prime Minster.

While the pair didn't go head to head, they were grilled by Jeremy Paxman from immigration right down to public image before facing questions from the audience in the studio.

Despite looking uncomfortable throughout the entire thing, Cameron was given the edge 54% - 46% in a poll after the programme.

Paxman went for the jugular with both men; Cameron was criticised for the number of people zero hours contracts in this country, the rise of food banks under a Conservative government, and his failure to meet his immigration pledge of five years ago.

Miliband faced a similar grilling on immigration when he refused to put a figure on acceptable numbers of people coming to this country. It also got a little personal for the Labour leader as the relationship with his brother David and the struggles with his personal image were all topics of discussion.

Despite some difficult questions that came their way, both Cameron and Miliband took the opportunity to deliver their election messages as well as some of their promises.

Cameron did come under fire for not really spelling out where welfare cuts were going to come should he find himself in office for a second term. He refused to say more than what has already been set out in Conservative plans.

He said: "We've identified, for instance, freezing in-work benefits ... for two years to raise some of that money, but the £12bn, that compares with £20bn that was saved in this current parliament on welfare, so this is well within the range of what we can do."

The Prime Minster was clearly uncomfortable throughout and it was easy to see why he was not in favour of the live debates.

However, Miliband seemed to thrive in front of the public audience as he delivered a passionate speech about making Britain better and helping working families make this country work for them.

He said: "I think this is a choice between those who think this is as good as it gets for Britain and those who think we can do a lot better than this. The Prime Minister said he couldn't live on a zero hours contract, well I couldn't either, so let's do something about it."

Both men struggled under the pressure piled on from Paxman - known for his tough interview style - in what was both a tense and interesting debate. Both parties are neck and neck in the polls at the moment with neither having a majority to form a government - the next few weeks are going to be very interesting indeed.

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