The excellent Yorkshire Post newspaper has provided extensive and fair coverage of the leadership election. It recently gave both contenders space on the comment pages to make their pitches and last week gave Freddie Forsyth the opportunity to put the case for DD and against DC.
The Post has supported the Conservative Party in the past but has struggled to find much enthusiasm in recent years. It sat on the fence in 2001 and merely urged its readers to vote for a smaller Labour majority at this year's General Election.
Although David Davis represents a Yorkshire seat the newspaper has rejected the local Heineken candidate and plumped for Mr Cameron in today's leader column:
"Mr Davis has fought a pugnacious campaign. He has carefully delineated policies which are dear to his heart and, indeed, dear to many of the Tory members on whose decision his future rests. Tough on crime, naturally Eurosceptic and with an instinctive belief in the moral virtues of low taxes, the Haltemprice and Howden MP has strained every sinew in his attempt to show how his policy agenda can take his party forward. But he has failed. All the soundings suggest that, even in his native Yorkshire, where he should expect to be much further ahead than he is, his message has not hit home. Although it might be thought that the former front-runner has far more in common with grassroots Conservatism than does Mr Cameron, it seems that this particular electorate has other ideas.
There can be no clearer indication that those who form the backbone of the party are now ready to embrace the outside world. Three times now the Conservatives have picked leaders whose strength was their appeal to the party's core vote and three times those leaders have failed. If the Tories are to broaden their appeal sufficiently to stand a chance of gaining power, the man best equipped for that task is Mr Cameron. Ever since he stole a march on Mr Davis with a party-conference speech that was both eloquent and thoughtful, the Shadow Education Secretary has consistently stayed ahead of his rival. He has been helped, of course, by a natural charisma, which is unfortunately necessary for a successful party leader in this mass-media age and which Mr Davis does not possess.
But there is more to Mr Cameron than image. He believes that the Conservatives can become a truly national party again not by abandoning their core beliefs, but by making them relevant to the modern world. In the task of cajoling non-Conservatives to embrace the party, rather than merely exciting existing party members, Mr Cameron appears to have the intellectual and persuasive skills that will be necessary. This is not to say that this inexperienced politician does not have much to prove, notably in the detailed formulation of policy. Choosing Mr Cameron as leader is not without risks. But risk is what the Conservative Party has to embrace if it is to prove its relevance to a 21st-century electorate."