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Well done on telling the Times that Cameron is only now just managing to connect with the core of the party (your website readers actually, but we'll gloss over that). Really helpful. Cheers.

ConHome is right. David Cameron is only just connecting with us. But let us rejoice at a repenting sinner!

(For anyone who didn't hear it, the Editor was excellent on the Today programme this morning.)

DC's comments noted with pleasure BUT..when do we give the aspirational families of the UK something in quantifiable terms?

It should be pointed out that the use of the word 'lurch' has been overdone and misused. The only 'lurch' that the most of the public are aware of is the lurch that politicians have left us in.

Your monthly survey has been getting a lot of coverage recently.

It's not a lurch, it's keeping the political seesaw balanced on its fulcrum. Talk about the environment, green taxes AND talk about crime and immigration.

It's not an OR. We've had both sides over the last few weeks.

I see this as the start of the next phase of the 'plan'.

First, get the brand right, introduce the change (social responsibility)

Second, get the policy reports in to back up the first part.

Third, get the whole message out to the public, the new (green taxes, social responsibility) and the established (crime, tax, immigration). Show how they are all linked together.

Fourth, set out the battlefield on the message.

I suspect the last phase is, get on the government's case.

With the economic situation starting to deteroriate and public sector grumbles. Brown must be getting worried, these are his decision coming home to roost.

We need sustained, in your face, public Conservative talking heads in the media from now until election day.

I think election day is also a long way off.

Back to Primitive Conservatism!

To win the next election David Cameron has to get the balance right. He has to have support from all sides of the Conservative party, but he also has to win over disaffected Labour and Liberal voters to take those vital marginals. The way I see it David and his team are working to provide a package that most people can buy into. A mandate to govern for the whole nation but with Conservative principles at the core.

What do you mean by saying David Cameron did not talk about immigration'in a scary way'? You mean he dodged giving any coherent view and ended up saying it was 'beneficial'.
Presumably to the lib conservatives 'scary' means talking realistically about the impoverishment of Britains poorest workers facing job competition,forcing them to send their children to multilingual cesspools of schools etc let alone the cost to the taxpayer of providing massive infrastrusture costs to support extra population,the threat from imans and terrorists etc.
Wake up! the electorate consistently name immigration as their number one concern and its not because a politician may be 'scary'?

DC "indicated" in 2005 that he was leaving the EPP, but his words were not worth the paper they were written on. And unlike his unequivocal pledge that time, these new "indications" are all hedged about with so many caveats and loopholes that they are clearly just empty puff to keep even more members from downing tools.

The only thing which came over clearly was his determination to leave Brown's crushing tax burden in place, balancing any reductions in IHT or Income Tax with "green" tax increases: result is continued tax-strangulation at the same level. Brown or Cameron, it will make no difference to the £ in our pockets.

Tony Makara (10.27) is right.

David Cameron needs to be all things to all men.

Cameron does not need to be all things to all men. He needs to prioritise then stick to it otherwise he risks alienating everyone.

Whilst there is no lurch to the right, shall we say that DC and the party have drifted into the prevailing winds and are scudding along quite nicely having articulated the fears and threats and concerns of many in the country. The fact that this has necessitated a starboard tack simply means that the support will drift with you.
Having said that DC hasn't really had to fight too hard, has he? NuLab and GBH in disarray, discontent and rumblings in the backbencher ranks, threats of whips re Europe and the Treaty(Constitution), strikes, concerns over immigration, security, Iraq, Afghan, prisons, justice, policing, crime. Oh dear, one can go on and on and on.
DC needs now to follow up, which means the Shadow Cabinet will have to keep their nerve, ruck and maul the ball to the line, minimise dissent and score an election result.
Almost too simple to be true.

What is the definition of the "centre ground"?If the vast majority of the public want tougher controls on immigration-which they very much do (see the polls)-then why do the liberal media insist on accusing the the Tories of chasing their "core vote"?It is not the Tories' core vote ,it is the majority opinion.The Tories have an essentially centrist position on immigration which the BBC and other liberal players are trying to claim is a lurch to the right.Over 50% of ethnic minorities want tougher controls for God's sake.

The Unions are starting to get very tetchy since Blair went. Clearly the Unions were expecting a much more helpful Prime Minister and they arent getting what they feel they deserve.

I hope he is only 'indicating' right and that he will continue to 'do something every week to show that his gentler, greener conservatism remains strong.' Otherwise he risks losing support from ethnic minorities, women, and everyone else we need to win round if we are to win an election.

As someone whose parents immigrated to the UK, I have to confess his comments on immigration made me feel uncomfortable. Immigration may well be too high, and triangulating by means of the strain on public services is undoubtedly clever, but i personally think arguing the point in terms of this government's failure to do anything about the c.5 million people on benefitis stronger.

His newsnight performance may well be getting a lot of plaudits and positive coverage, but is that an end in itself?

This "lurch" business is tired out claptrap. There's only so much mockney repetition the public can take. There is every sign that the Labour hypnosis is wearing off, its mantras dwindling into irrelevant and dated slogans. What the tories should now point out is that under the mask of "centrism" Labour has drifted steadily and relentlessly to the left. How exactly? Well, it has piled on the taxes, opened the immigration dam, pressured the universities into social engineering, politicised what remains of the school curriculum and banned those passtimes of which it happens to disapprove - hunting to hounds and smoking in pubs. Few of these measures are popular. Some are hated. The government's record on crime is particularly appalling. A few home secretaries ago, a large number of violent thugs were found to have gone missing from the prison system. Had this been a conservative blunder, labour would never have stopped reminding people of it. Why can the tory party not captilise on these discontents with the same persistence and vigour as former oppositions?

True, Cameron fielded the Newsnight questions with great aplomb. He is, after all, an intelligent man, admired by the renowned if regretably centrist Vernon Bogdanor. What he must add to this is something of the common touch, by which I do not mean Blair's patronising habit of dropping his aitches in front of trades unionists. I mean the ability to speak in vivid, homely, passionate language about all those things which make labour government so bloody and tory government so vital.

All very well B but how about starting off with the 5.25m voters we have lost since 1992.

As many of us advocated on Louise Bagshawe's column a few weeks back, the Party needs to keep David Cameron but change the strategy. This strategic shift should help to win back many of the 5.25m voters that Stand Up Towel Up refers to.

Tim, with respect, I was disappointed with how you phrased your words on the Today programme this morning. Whatever your intentions, I don't think your comments were helpful.

I agree with Iain Dale:

"To say, as Tim did on the Today Programme and on his blog today, that this is appealing to the core vote, is to do Gordon Brown's dirty work for him. The main line of attack by Labour at the moment is that Cameron is lurching to the right and will revert to a core vote strategy. It's a pathetic smear, but if Conservatives like Tim start saying things which appear to endorse it, then it does not bode well. Tim's his own man and will no doubt robustly defend his stance, but in this instance I think he called it wrong."

You seem to almost act as a "Trade Union Leader" for the Tory membership sometimes, which does nothing to aid the cause of getting a Conservative government elected.

I think you need to think more carefully in future about how your comments can completely alter the way in which Camerons message is interpreted by the media and the public.

This is not a lurch to the right, the editor has deliberately misinterpreted Cameron's recent announcements for his own ends. What has actually happened is that DC has been talking about issues that matter to the vast majority and laid out some practical solutions to the problems. If anything this is traditional conservative philosophy i.e practical solutions and policies for the world we live in.

One recent ex prime minister stated that the platform for his premiership would be education education education.He then went onto state that he would be tough on crime and tough on the causes of crime.Both statements turned out to be an absolute farce.Are we now to accept that Cameron is going to use immigration immigration immigration as a platform for him to receiving the keys to number 10 at the next general election.I personally welcome any concerted attention given to this "problem" instead of pretending the immigration problem does not exist.

Tim,

I agree with Iain Dale and Peter Hatchet here, the BBC are looking to give a hospital appointment out to someone. It seems Iain didn't fall for it but you did.

BBC journalists and researchers are increasingly lazy and simply want talking heads to fit a preconceived debate agenda of the BBC's choosing, NOT the issue concerning the public at large. That is the pretence of the BBC's objectivity. R4 Today of all programme is only second worst to R4 PM in this respect.

With ConservativeHome quotes being used on Newsnight yesterday and now on R4 Today, I would be very suspicious of any invite to appear on any BBC programme.

It's their agenda, not CCHQ's.

In so far as Immigration, it's a centrist slant. Immigration is too high because it's placing a strain on public services and housing.

That's about as centrist as it gets.

So no, it's not a lurch to the right but squaring the circle.

Indicating right??? This is the mother of all handbrake turns...hardly surprising given the recent bad polls, embarassing by-election results and collapsing membership. Whilst welcoming it I fear all it may have done is to confuse voters further about the party's real intentions and justify the contention that flighty, flip-floppy DC would say anything to get a vote...in contrast to the solid, granite-like Broon..."man of principle etc etc"

"Indicating Right", "Lurch to the Right". For goodness sake, what the heck are you doing using the language of your enemies? Terms like Left and Right are pretty meaningless these days (if they ever were) and are only ever used when attacking other parties. Using them about your own party is suicidal.

Most of Iain Dale's post didn't make sense, I suspect he was just throwing his toys out of the pram for not being interviewed himself.

Stand Up Throw Up,

There, there. Don't worry your focaccia will arrive at your desk soon and together with all your other PPE chums at Victoria Street you can have a rant at why Dave is such a bad, bad man.

"But it's wrong to say that the party is lurching to the right. "

Well, Tim, is this what you believe, or is it this, as reported on the BBC website?

"Tim Montgomerie, editor of the ConservativeHome website, said in the last ten days there had been "various overtures" on the four "core vote issues" for Tory members - Europe, tax, crime and immigration.

He added: "For a lot of us grassroots who have wanted to see this shift, it is beginning to happen." "

Yet another helpful comment to the press.

"I think you need to think more carefully in future about how your comments can completely alter the way in which Camerons message is interpreted by the media and the public."

This particularly relevant in the context of this site's criticisms of the CCHQ media operation.

It doesn't matter what DC does now, he's a busted flush and won't regain the support of the Grass-Roots or those who are socially conservative.

Simply regurgitating some script, written by a tabloid hack, isn't going to convince anyone. He's just all talk. If you actually read the text of what he's said, he's not actually saying or promising anything - other than delivering more vague vocal platitudes. The press (the Mail, Telegraph, Sun, etc.) seem to be reading an awful lot into what Cameron says, which really isn't there.

As for 'turning right' - don't make me laugh.

Problem is that the Cameron led Tories don't offer any solutions or answers - just more talking shops and hand-wringing.

As Tam Large said, when he promised to take the Tories out of the EPP and then failed to do so - you've seen all you need to in the lack of trust-worthiness of Cameron.

The current stories in the papers reminds me of the state of the press during the Tory party leadership contest. Everyone saying how great Cameron was, but they didn't actually seem to listen closely - as if they had, they'd have realised that he was just a grinning, perma-tanned upper-class used car salesman, without any beliefs or moral fibre - just another posh boy, on the make. History seems to be repeating itself.

The reason why the politics of 'and' is being embraced by the Party is that only now is it possible to do so.

Decontamination of the brand has meant that conservative policies (which have always had popular appeal) can be espoused from Conservative politicians without people switching off.

Tim is right that this is not a lurch to the right but DC will have to be careful to avoid it being portrayed as such (by the BBC et al). If Brown and his allies are successful in characterising this as a 'lurch' then much of the good work done on decontamination will have been undone.

Stephen Tolkinghome is right. We need sound policies for a happier Britain with a man of his word.

I'm hoping that we lose the next election, Cameron gets booted out, and either Davis or Brady take over.

It could be brilliant. Iain Dale would be Chief of Staff and 'Reform' could run our policy creation department and we could get rid of all these namby pambys.

It would be an electoral sensation. I reckon the street toughs would respect Davis. Imagine it - you could stage-manage a fight between Davis and someone to show how tough he is. I doubt you could pull that off with Cameron.

Wrong on all three counts 215cu.

Don't eat focaccia (gluten intolerant)
Didn't study PPE (Int Rels at LSE)
Don't work at CCHQ (Now at Millbank not Victoria St)

Chin chin

"I reckon the street toughs would respect Davis. Imagine it - you could stage-manage a fight between Davis and someone to show how tough he is."

Yeah, let's have some WWF type scenario tag teams. Cameron and Osborne against Davis and Redwood. The winner takes all !

Whilst watching DC,s interview on Newsnight I was thinking of the great BBC interviewers of the past. People like Robin Day, Brian Redhead etc who were giants of interviewing compared to last nights pygmies.
Apart from Mark Urban who at least asked interesting and intellligent questions the rest merely used the opportunity to peddle their left wing bias and class driven bile.
"What does a rich man like you DC, Eton, Oxford etc know about the poor and low paid" asked one.. if such a question had been asked of a black man knowing nothing about whites or islamists knowing nothing about christians it would have been classed as racists questions.
This doesn,t surprise me however because the left wing make rules to suit themselves and their prejudices, irrespective of right and wrong.
Many of the other questions from Crick etc. were nothing more than regurjitated stuff peddled by Brown and the Labour party. Talk about doing homework for the interview, it appeared Crick and the other 2 downloaded theirs from the labour party website, not an original question in sight.
I,m not looking for politicians to be questioned like they are gods, (not even Tory ones), but to be asked original, incisive, intelligent, questions, yes to be put on the spot and no, not the sneering "I,m smarter than you" type questioning from the likes of Andrew Neil.
I have to say Paxman was correct in his analysis of the depths to which television has sunk, I also like the editor of Newsnight complaining about the Cosmic Aid day.
If both are interested in improving the standards on their own programme, Newsnight they could start by firing Crick, Flanders, Davies etc. and getting in people from the Robin Day school of interviewing, if such a thing exists.
I thought DC was good but we need a few rottwilers to go in and chew up these Labour supporting BBC interviewers.

John F is right.

I reckon there's nothing which will win us votes like the sight of David Davis shouting down Paxman.

I really don't think Grayling is up to it yet. He doesn't have the finesse or lightness of touch that DD has.

He hasn't even claimed a scalp, and I don't think he has a head for numbers like DD has.

"I reckon there's nothing which will win us votes like the sight of David Davis shouting down Paxman."

Of course, during the leadership campaign, it was Cameron who dealt well with Paxman, while Davis fared badly....

David, whatever you mean by "Cameron who dealt well with Paxman...", it is clear that in a fist fight, DD would nail Paxman. We need some passion, some anger, some aggression. Enough of this "empathy" and "reasonable tone".

But DavisFan, if you think DD would have fun with Paxman, imagine what Grayling, armed with 2000 press releases, could unleash in a Newsnight studio. SHeer hell, that's what. And that's exactly what we need to promise at the next election.

Cameron's "performance" on newsnight last night was pathetic. What came out of his mouth was mind blowingly crass, insipid, opaque and directionless (and if he's spouting incoherent hints at a redressing of his, the Party's?, stance on core issues as a result of listening to you Tim we might as well all "go home" - no pun intended).

It is not propitious to lay the grave problems of our country at the feet of our leader and/or his closest disciples but it is propitious to study and comment on his interpretation of these and subsequent response in preparing to achieve the objective of Government for a better country on all fronts (again, no pun intended).

Yes, well - I rest my case.

We will lose the next election heavily, whether called today, tomorrow or next year, and there is nothing that can how be done about it as Cameron will not win it and even if he goes now (pigs flying.....), it'll take 4 or 5 years to rebuild and begin representing the silent majority with courage, conviction and risk.

Lament, lament - we chose wrong and now we must live with the consequences but it would help if most of the members and affiliates were not as mealy mouthed and deluded - and therefore swallowed the bitter pill and got on with things.

Andrew Carr

We know what "The Unholy Trinity" (Brown/BBC/Grauniad) are up to; they are trying to paint Mr Cameron as a 'waving wight winger' (honestly, that is how a public-school lefty that I know described it -- he meant raving right winger but couldn't pronounce the Rs).

Most of the Noosetight interview was about crime and the broken society, but some elements of the media unduly focused on immigration/green taxes/something else. Green taxes sounds very 'wight wing' too, don't you think?

I happen to agree with what Tim said, because Mr Cameron:

(a) has got core-vote support behind him on crime/broken society, yes for the first time (the green taxes thing I think will be scrapped); and

(b) has already 'decontaminated' the brand so that people (e.g. Floating Voters, LibDem voters etc)just do not see as credible any attempt to paint him as a Waving Wight Winger. But they appreciate him being tough on murderers of 11-year-old kids and trying to mend the broken society.

I hope to make time later to properly respond to Iain Dale's post but my sister is getting married tomorrow and the preparations for that are my number one priority!

For the moment: I said nothing to Today this morning that I haven't written many times on this blog. I don't do media for the sake of it and turn down many opportunities. ConservativeHome's manifesto has been pretty consistently followed from day one of this site's existence.

I think Iain's contention that there has not been a noticeable rebalancing of the Tory project in the last fortnight is not a view shared by many other commentators.

Andrew Carr is right --

We've decontaminated the brand of its association with Euromania, racism and our being a threat to public services.

If we have a little putsch and bring in a new leader, we can get back to those core issues which matter to people: national sovereignty, immigration and tax cuts.

And there's one man to do it: David Davis.

The shifts in Tory strategy are an amazing vindication of this internet site. ConsHome has always advocated compassionate Conservatism but has asked for traditional Conservative policies to be talked about too. That is happening. Can't we all welcome that the Conservative Party might be able to unite around this?

"Whilst watching DC,s interview on Newsnight I was thinking of the great BBC interviewers of the past. People like Robin Day, Brian Redhead etc who were giants of interviewing compared to last nights pygmies."

JohnF, I couldn't agree more. I think the best interviewer was ITV's Brian Walden. On his 'Weekend World' programme in the 1970s he used to roast very articulate politicans, and it has to be said that the average MP back then was of a much higher standard than the average MP of today. I also rate Peter Jay as a real intellectual, both these men were Labour I know, but credit where credit is due.

I have to say that I tend to agree with Iain Dales view. Cameron was asked the questions and he answered them.It is not as if he had demanded to talk about immigration, tax cuts etc in advance.
I was suprised most of the newspapers splashed on his words about immigration which were a small part of the overall interview,but had quite forgotten about the herd mentatility of the lobby who often tend to follow what others have written.

Andrew Carr> "Lament, Lament....we chose wrong".......For Pity's Sake!!!!!!!

The only thing to lament is winging, swivel-eyed goons like yourself who repeatedly slag off Cameron on here!!!!

Cameron is doing a great job, and let's be absolutely clear about this, there is NO-ONE in OUR party who could do any better.

So March, March, March backwards ever backwards AC, the rest of us of will keep working to build a 21st Century Government.

ConHome is right. David Cameron is only just connecting with us. But let us rejoice at a repenting sinner!

Too true. However, the real question is whether he believed in any of that 'moderniser' BS in the first place.

Peter Hitchens's excellent expose on Cameron a few months back gave plenty of reasons for us to suppose the whole thing has been an act from start to (hopefully) finish.

But is there any reason to believe that the reformed Cameron is not an act also?

Will the real 'Dave' please stand up?

But malcolm - Tim's point is that it's not just immigration.

In recent days Cameron has touched every hot topic of the core vote...

...and about time too!

I agree Tony, as a teenager stuck in on a wet Sunday, seeing a politician getting beaten up on Weekend World was entertaining at least until it stopped raining.

Compared to last night's shower, no contest.

Walden v Cameron... that would be trickier. I think based on last night's performance, could have been a real slug-fest.

I also think, they'd end up smiling after though.

215cu, Yes, that would have been worth watching. I wonder if it might be an idea to bring back some of these veteran interviewers to tackle modern politicans, just as a curoisity piece. There just isn't anyone to fill the void now they have retired or sadly passed on.

Since Peter Jay left the BBC the standard of economic jornalism has nosedived. Now its all about making the info accesible to Radio Five listeners. GSCE style bitesize info with no hard analysis of events.

'Weekend World' was, without question, the best political show on TV and the theme music was even great too!

"In recent days Cameron has touched every hot topic of the core vote..."

Due to outside factors. Where possible, he still, rightly, is focusing on central ground issues.

"I said nothing to Today this morning that I haven't written many times on this blog. "

That's not Iain's point; it's that the BBC is desperate to portray the party as lurching to the right, and you come along as the self-proclaimed voice of the grassroots and give them an excuse to claim it.

Tim-you've complained on this site that Cameron needs to run a better media operation to take better control of the media agenda. To be honest, as long as you are out there giving interviews that play into the hands of the Labour party, he may as well not bother.

Walden v Cameron... that would be trickier. I think based on last night's performance, could have been a real slug-fest.

Didn't I read some months back that Walden thinks Cameron is wonderful and has been lecturing candidates' courses or something of the sort.

Surprising. Possibly the old boy has lost it, or maybe I have.

I loved it a few years bck when somebody asked Walden whether some windy guff of Major's would be quoted in years to come.

'Er...no' he replied. 'I think we can confidently assume that nobody will quote Major'.

Vintage Walden.


I heard Damien Green on the radio this morning actually banging about immigration. Intrigued by this sudden Tory interest in the nation's number one concern I listened most intently, but I never heard any mention of the source from which the overwhelming amount of immigration now flows into Britain (read England).

So, thinking I must have misheard I logged on to Cameron's Newsnight (the BBC'Listen Again' – if you must) joust with the freaked out interviewers of the lefty BBC, including the infamous Crick who was once reprimanded by a Parliamentary Committee in connection with IDS allegations.
Sure enough there was Dave manfully telling his four accusers that 'too high' immigration was putting great stress on our NHS, schools etc.
I was beginning to warm to the earnest Dave, but he broke the spell. Apparently, his argument with large-scale immigration did not extend to the main source of it all - the EU. No sir! Dave had no quarrel with immigration from the EU, but he did think that any future countries joining should be subject to moratorium (possibly) - it pays to read the small print with Dave (and Broon). And, so on that disappointing note it was time to switch off and wave goodbye Dave, from him and goodbye Dave from her. Anyone believing that Dave ia going to be firm with the EU is going to be left in the lurch (again).
PS Can't wait to vote for more Greenery and air travel tax. How about you?


The Editor hath proclaimed: "I hope to make time later to properly respond to Iain Dale's post but my sister is getting married tomorrow and the preparations for that are my number one priority!"

Oh no, editor. Surely you don't put all that pro-family stuff into practice really? Anyone might start to think you actually believe it.

Thanks Londoner!

:-)

Dontmakemelaugh,

What on earth has it got to do with the EU other than they are coming from the EU? Bear in mind it's a two way border, plenty of UK ex-pats seeking sunnier climes so we can travel out to live but not let people come in? How ludicrous!

Also, I think many Conservatives are fed up with the eye-swivelling window lickers in the party that blame the EU whatever the problem. Sun not shining today? Blame the EU!

Where Cameron was spot-on last night and you must have missed it was our government did not take the transitional agreements on offer from the EU to limit immigration from the accession countries. Cameron said that his government would put them all into place for new accession countries.

We were one of the very few EU countries not to take them. It's purely Labour's fault if the public services are now strained in places like Slough.

However, these people from the former Eastern Bloc have come here and are by and large putting our workshy dole-ites to shame with their industry and graft.

I'd rather we could export the listless out of the country and save on the welfare bill and have more of the same please.

The government of this country is now about <85% - some people have a massive capacity for pretending otherwise.

Dave said absolutely nothing to explain how he could possibly change massive immigration into the UK from the EU (it's not just from Eastern Europe by the way). This is storing up enormous problems for this country - the 'infrastructure' is a side issue - the big one is rising unemployment amongst young, poorly educated British people and depressed wages - what that will bring I hate to think. Without the immigration employers would have to offer training opportunities to such people as used to be the case. Dave is totally unconvincing on this (and most things).

As the EU makes / directs nearly 80% of our legislation now, it is not surprising that a lot of complaints (80% ???) are aimed at the EU - most of the time they are responsible. The fact that we can do nothing about the laws emanating from the EU ensures that all we can do is complain... until we wake up and leave, and regain control of our own country.

DC won't take us out, he made it clear last night he loves the EU.

Sorry: the above post should have started:
The government of this country is now <85% EU...

Londoner 16:42 : Well the Editor sounds a lot more convincing than Stephanie Flanders did on Newsnight last night :-)

So far we have:

Controlled Immigration
Lower Taxes
More Police

All we need now are:

Cleaner hospitals
School discipline

And accountability!


Bingo! (where have I heard that before?)

So it's happened. The lurch to the right which decent people have predicted for months.

Panic, a moment of madness, and Cameron is set to follow the other Tory goons down the far-right path to oblivion.

I said this last night on yesterday morning's thread but I repeat it here because it's still true: it's not some magic press relations strategy that has prompted this coverage. It's the fact that people recognise the problems in our society, and that the message from David etc is finally beginning to register (remember when I said repeat things till we're all sick of them, as only then will normal voters start to remember them? This is why!)

And I'd add to that that this is not a lurch, a shimmy or even (pace Tim) a shift to the right or anywhere else. David and the rest of us MUST continue to make a consistent and coherent case for a modern, liberal Conservative agenda. What the Newsnight interview shows is that David has what it takes to articulate a sensible, compassionate case and have people listen.

IF CCHQ has decided to dog-whistle and brief this out as a rightwards move, I'm disappointed.

Its funny that Camron 'lurches' to the right, but Brown has a free hand to do whatever he wants with no labels attached. I've long argued that Cameron is a 'proper' Tory, but just needed to have a proper conversation with the general public about the direction of the party under his leadership without using language we activists are all used to but they didn't like.

This is politics in Britain today my friends, we need to do it the smart way, not the old blunt way. Those that foam at the mouth at 'project Cameron' fail to see the impressive (but immensley difficult) strategy he has to get folks to not only listen to us, but agree with us once again.

I am very disappointed with this lurch to the right. Campaigning on immigration will certainly make me less likely to vote Conservative. I really do not see new voters coming on board a rallying "immigration is too high" cry. Core supporters may like big campaigning against immigration but the other group that might also be very concerned about immigration, the working class core Labour supporters, especially on northern council estates are not going to vote Tory.

Those that foam at the mouth at 'project Cameron'

What about those from both wings of the party who foam at the mouth about 'BBC reds' and 'disloyalists' within party ranks.

Check out the comments on last night's Newsnight interview if you don't believe it still goes on.

In my long experience in the party I have learned that purple-faced, spittle-spraying Blimpish reactions are more likely to be incited by either of these factors than by 'damned foreigners', 'long haired nancy-boys' or some other caricature cause.

Beleive it or not, I have been on the receiving end of classic 'Nasty Party' venom more than once.

I was nearly lynched by an audience of Tory women when I dared to criticise increases in pay for the CEOs of denationalised corporations, and I was told that I was a communist and a traitor by some old fool at a dinner when I told him that the Iraq War was senseless and illegal and that Bush was a moron.

All these people were - and if still alive no doubt still are - keen party members.

How do you square that with 'Modern Britain'?

The next time(and indeed every time) that some Labour drone or the BBC or Tim or some bloke in the Guardian say that Cameron has lurched, indicated, jumped, swum, limbo-ed or body-popped (add your own verb) to the right, he should reply "I don't give an ambidextrous monkey's about what political direction you suggest I am headed in, I am in the business of solving peoples problems(largely caused by deceiful, incompetent and wasteful Gordon) and therefore if those problems are to do with immigration, crime, europe or taxation and if (choose from the above)wants to play political strategy guessing games then they are welcome to. meanwhile I will hold the government to account and do my best to suggest solutions for peoples problems."

voreas06, good points. If I were David Cameron I'd respond by saying.

"Its no good trying to pigeon-hole me as being left or right. I am working to produce policy to govern for the people of Britain as a whole. The government of our country goes beyond political factions. What we need is consensus across the board, a set of intitatives that will take our nation forward, one nation, one people, working together to heal and restore our country"

Something like that to stress thetheme of national unity which trancends politics.

I wonder is this all gearing up for a repeat of the 1970 election, where Labour go into an October poll as the favourites, and Cameron connects with just the right issues to pull off a modest but surprising win?

If we are pushed into a corner and have to be bold , then yes, we may produce a big suprise for Labour,

Matt

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