Conservative Diary

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The Conservatives could be Rantzen-ed if we do not clean house before a General Election

A senior aide to David Cameron told me over the weekend that the Conservative leader agrees with Tory members that repayment of wrongly claimed allowances is not going to be enough to meet the public mood.

Yesterday, I set out five things that David Cameron needs to do next:

1TO5 All those things - particularly number one - need to happen BEFORE a General Election.  The party cannot go into an election with the likes of Andrew MacKay and Julie Kirkbride remaining as Tory MPs.  Today's Daily Mail reports that Esther Rantzen is considering running against disgraced Labour MP Margaret Moran:

"Miss Rantzen acknowledged that the MP had agreed to hand back the cash. 'She may think this is enough. Her constituents, however, may beg to differ - and if they do, I am more than happy to offer myself up as an alternative."

BellRantzenThe former That's Life presenter "urged anti-sleaze campaigner Martin Bell - who famously unseated the former Tory MP Neil Hamilton in Tatton - to produce a guide to political novices on how to beat MPs."  She told the Mail: "Surely Mr Bell could now offer a new generation of hopefuls a few tips on how it's done? Because frankly we are sick of so many of our party political MPs, and their ghastly conspiracy to extract as much money from us as possible."

The internet makes it very easy for such "a new generation of hopefuls" to emerge.  The Sun suggests that Mr Cameron will call for an immediate General Election.  He shouldn't want that election until he has cleaned up his own house.

Tim Montgomerie

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