Conservative Diary


14 Aug 2009 12:11:15

Tory leadership moves into top gear to reaffirm party's commitment to NHS

1.30pm update: Andrew Lansley is again challenging Health Secretary Andy Burnham to match the Conservative pledge on NHS spending, having just released the following statement:

"Andy Burnham knows he is misleading the British public when he says the Conservatives are not committed to the NHS. The real question is will Labour match our promise for a real terms increase in the health budget?"


The Tory leadership has moved into top gear in the last 24 hours to reaffirm the party's commitment to the founding values of the NHS and to increase the resources available to it. Andrew Lansley attacked Dan Hannan's "distorted" and "negative" view of the NHS and David Cameron blogged about his pride in the NHS.  David Cameron has just given an interview for Sky News in which, under questioning, he said of Dan Hannan that "he does have some quite eccentric views about some things":

I think David Cameron and Andrew Lansley are at their best when they are restating their own commitment to the NHS rather than making negative comments about Dan Hannan.  Labour want to portray the Tories as split on this issue.  I've just spoken again to Dan, who is on holiday, and he is turning down media request after media request.  He has no desire to inflame this issue.  His interview on American television was only a restatement of the views he set out in written form a year ago.  His account of the relatively poor NHS patient survival rates for many critical conditions is entirely factual.

Picture 13 David Cameron is absolutely committed to the NHS. He saw his late son Ivan receive extraordinary care from nurses and doctors and has developed an emotional bond with it. It is typical of Labour to try and score political points but they are making a mistake.  The politics of this aren't ultimately good for Labour.  The more David Cameron is on TV talking about the NHS - and his desire to improve it - the better for the Conservative cause.  I'm a believer in the rule coined by Political Betting's Mike Smithson: The more Cameron is in the media talking about anything, the better for the Conservatives.  Andrew Lansley's Today programme interview was also notable for his emphasis on the need to improve the NHS; to make it more efficient and more responsive.  That combination of reform and defending the NHS' provision of free-at-the-point-of-use care is a winning combination.

Tim Montgomerie

13 Jul 2009 13:02:28

'One World Conservatism'

I've put this video on our revamped videos page (we're now uploading audio too) but a great video from CCHQ to accompany today's launch of the Conservative approach to international poverty (discussed earlier):

> The new One World Conservatism page at

Tim Montgomerie

2 Jul 2009 11:40:08

Should Mr Osborne be preparing a campaign to expose Brown's secret tax rises agenda?

Daniel Finkelstein thinks so although, rightly notes, the strategy would not be without risk:

"There are, of course, two dangers to a tax attack. The first is that it exposes the Tories on spending, suddenly making Labour look coherent rather than delusional and making the dividing line real.  The second is that opens the Tories to difficult questions about their own tax plans."

My own view is that we need to wheel out that bomb again...

Tim Montgomerie

1 Jul 2009 12:58:04

Balls and Mandelson launch co-ordinated attempt to blunt Tory leadership's attacks on Gordon Brown's dishonesty

The Labour high command has realised that the Tory attacks on the dishonesty of Gordon Brown's position on public spending are causing real damage with voters and the commentariat. Rather than put their hands up and change course they have launched a coordinated attempt to say there is something illegitimate about the Tories' questioning of Brown's pretence that spending will not be cut.

Mandelson accuses George Osborne of getting "into the gutter"...

...while Ed Balls attacks the "bullying" style of David Cameron at PMQs:

Tim Montgomerie

8 Jun 2009 11:44:17

The only party with MEPs in every part of Britain

With Northern Ireland's results still to be announced.

3 Jun 2009 17:45:32

Britain can't afford another year of Labour

Good video just out from CCHQ. The third in one day! The other two are here. 'Casino Royale' will be glad that the attack is on Labour failure, not Brown's failure.

Tim Montgomerie

31 May 2009 20:02:06

Frank Cook, the MP for Stockton North, today apologised for claiming £5 on expenses for a church donation

15 May 2009 15:53:13

A class apart

Could this be a bigger contrast with Labour's feeble effort?

Well done Mr C.

Tim Montgomerie

15 May 2009 07:32:58

There is nothing British about the BNP

The BNP wants to define itself - as a patriotic party concerned about jobs and housing.  I've written for The Telegraph today arguing that we must not let that happen and we need to focus on the BNP's core belief - its desire to build an all white Britain.

The BNP is making sophisticated use of new media to get its message across.  We've launched today to start something of a fightback.  This is our first product:

4 May 2009 15:19:04


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