Conservative Diary

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A week of praise for David Cameron

By Matthew Barrett


In case you had missed it, here's some of the most striking...

  • Leo McKinstry: "Cameron is now the dominant politician of our times. Even in the local elections he helped the Tories to increase their total number of seats, an incredible achievement given the state of the economy and the media’s barrage of hysteria over the cuts." - in the Daily Express
  • Max Hastings: "Because Cameron is comfortable with himself, he makes others feel comfortable, too. He is clever, fluent, witty and direct. He and his wife Samantha bring to Downing Street a touch of stardust, such as Tony Blair had in his first halcyon days, but without Blair’s maddening preachiness. Cameron is willing to listen and learn. He knows how to behave — witness his refusal last week to dance publicly on Nick Clegg’s political grave." - in the Daily Mail
  • Benedict Brogan: "Mr Cameron also displayed his intent with his solid work-rate, rising at 5.30am to plough through his red boxes. Officials expressed admiration at his capacity to absorb detailed briefs (and wished Mr Clegg would do the same). Order has been restored to No 10 after the chaos of the Brown years... The clear winner is Mr Cameron, who has shown adaptability and drive, and acquired stature as a result. We have only to look across the Channel at how things might be to realise that Britain’s capacity to produce a functioning, resilient government out of an uncertain result is an achievement worth a cautious cheer." - in the Daily Telegraph
  • Simon Jenkins: "The past year has seen Cameron emerge as a political leader of real ability. He won last week's voting referendum with panache, releasing his attack dogs on the enemy while shrugging off Lib Dem cries of foul. He has sustained the "emergency coalition" aura of his government with greater finesse than did Lloyd George in 1916 or Ramsay MacDonald in 1931. He has yet to experience a serious political crisis or, with the exception of Libya, risk a possibly fatal trap. The cartoons are right. The head of school has a right to be cocky." - in the Guardian
  • Philip Stephens: "Mr Cameron exudes a confidence that says the thing that counts above all else is that he is prime minister. He was made for the role. Everything about 10 Downing Street – the limelight, the statesmanship and the daily exercise of power – fits him like an expensive suit. This self-assurance, suffused with a pragmatism that puts power before ideology, has carried Mr Cameron a long way. Britain has given him the benefit of the doubt." - in the Financial Times (£)
  • Peter Oborne: "Personally, too, the Prime Minister is setting about his mission with grace and charm. Gone is the brooding, dark presence of Gordon Brown, skulking round the Downing Street corridors and throwing a tantrum at a moment's notice. When he became Pope 500 years ago, Leo X is reported to have said to his brother Giuliano: "Since God has given us the Papacy, let us enjoy it." David Cameron, in sharp contrast to his predecessor, loves being in Number 10, and it makes him a much better leader. Unlike Brown or Thatcher, he does not involve himself, except when absolutely necessary, in detail. He has time for family life – in fact, with Samantha away, he has been looking after his children over the past few days." - in the Sunday Telegraph.

And our own Paul Goodman's reflection on Cameron's first year as Prime Minister.


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