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"A speech by the PM has to be an event" says Janan Ganesh. He's right.

By Tim Montgomerie
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Cameron on TV

Ask anyone in Number 10 what is the Tory Party's greatest asset and they'll invariably reply "Dave". But, assuming this is true, is it sensible to use the PM quite so much? I've long argued that Mr Cameron should kept back and used sparingly for the big occasion. In the last week, however, he has made an intervention on almost every day. In the last week we've had him promoting women on boards, announcing a summit on racism in football, writing for The Sunday Times about the NHS reforms, launching an inquiry into car insurance, promoting a consultation on alcohol abuse and tomorrow he'll be speaking in Scotland about the Union. It's too much. The Economist's Janan Ganesh put it well in a tweet earlier today: "Cameron has to be wary of initiative-itis. A speech by the PM has to be an event." Hyper-activity by the PM crowds out other ministers and it gets in the way of the PM focusing on the big behind-the-scenes issues that are crucial to his government's success including party management, the detail of legislation and brokering grand bargains across the Coalition. Tony Blair warned that a PM's half-life was getting shorter and shorter because of the intense 24 hour media cycle. Cameron must not be over-exposed.


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