Conservative Diary

« David Cameron writes an end of term report | Main | Charity director slams quango for bullying »

Francis Maude declares the Coalition Government as more radical than Thatcher in her first term

By Jonathan Isaby

MAUDE FRANCIS 2 The Guardian splashes today on its interview with Cabinet Office minister, Francis Maude, and highlights his assertion that the Coalition is seeking to push through quicker and more vigorous reforms than either Thatcher or Blair attempted in their first terms:

"If you look at the last transitions of governments coming in, I would say one of the things that Lady Thatcher regretted was not pushing ahead vigorously enough, and quickly enough, in terms of reform. The big reforming Thatcher governments were not until the 1983 and 1987 governments. Similarly, the Blair government did not just waste its first 100 days, it wasted its first five years.

"By contrast, we have prepared very carefully. This was work that I was leading in opposition. Obviously, it had to be adapted for the purposes of the coalition, but nonetheless we came in with a huge overlap between what the Lib Dems wanted and what we wanted to do. Clearly, we had thought a lot more about how we would do it, so we were well equipped to hit the ground running."

There's no question that through his work with what was CCHQ's Implementation Unit, Maude ensured that the Conservatives were more prepared for office than any other Opposition seeking to take over the reins of power. He says in the interview that the preparatory work the unit had undertaken "had to be adapted for coalition purposes, but nonetheless we came in with a huge overlap between what we wanted to do and what the Lib Dems wanted to do. Obviously we had thought a lot more about it."

Maude also uses the interview to respond to the "Brokeback Coalition" reference attributed earlier this week to David Davis:

"If I look at the 'brokeback coalition' jibe there is a bit of a compliment in there – relationships are good and it is kind of working. There is a lot of trust and a lot of stuff gets sorted out because they [Cameron and Nick Clegg] talk to one another and they have a strong personal relationship."

Read the full interview here.


You must be logged in using Intense Debate, Wordpress, Twitter or Facebook to comment.