After a very quiet few days David Cameron gets a boost from a letter to The Daily Telegraph. The letter from fourteen unsuccessful General Election candidates argues that "David Cameron is young, intelligent and charismatic. He is a modern, compassionate Conservative who understands the challenges of our age and is on the way up, rather than on the way down".
Much less good news for Mr Cameron is an article in The Independent. The article dredges up Mr Cameron's views on drugs when he was a member of the Home Affairs Select Committee:
"David Cameron, the Tory leadership contender, believes the UN should consider legalising drugs and wants hard-core addicts to be provided with legal "shooting galleries" and state-prescribed heroin. He also supported calls for ecstasy to be downgraded from the class-A status it shares with cocaine and heroin and said it would be "disappointing" if radical options on the law on cannabis were not looked at."
Ann Widdecombe (supporting Ken Clarke) is appalled at these views. She told The Indy:
"This is a grossly misled view that will have very damaging consequences for society. Most Conservatives would make the case that legalisation is misguided. If you legalise hard drugs you would effectively be making the state give first-time users their first experience. It's just not an option. And the World Health Organisation is against it."
Danny Kushlick, the director of the Transform Drug Policy Foundation, was much more encouraged by Mr Cameron's views:
"David Cameron deserves our utmost respect and admiration for refusing the 'war on drugs' rhetoric in calling for a discussion of legalisation with the UN body that oversees global prohibition... Too many politicians support the status quo because of careerism."
Mr Cameron's leadership "career" hopes are certainly not going to be helped by his views. It may be that his views have changed? The Labour Government's own views on downgrading the legal status of cannabis appear to have changed since they have seen the effects of their experiment - particularly with regard to mental illness.