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« Ken Clarke is August's winner but is he a serious contender for the Tory crown? | Main | Editorial: Liam Fox endorses an electoral college »


James Hellyer

On both declared and undeclared supporter figures, both of the supposed main challengers to Davis are on a level pegging with Doctor Fox.

Clearly his relatively low media profile has made him seem less of a prospect, despite having the same number of backers. Maybe now he's trashed soap opera politics and stood up for party democracy, he'll get more attention and eclipse the increasingly desperate looking Cameron.


Desperate looking Cameron?!, when he started he was one of a number of modernisers and not one of the best known, he has seen off the others and is still very much in the race. The only momentum Dr Fox has so far is on this blog.

James Hellyer

Then please explain why Cameron and Fox have the same number of declared and "undeclared" backers...

Selsdon Man

I seem to remember Viggers (this week) and Greenaway publicly backing Davis. I will look through my cuttings.

Selsdon Man

The Editorial says that Viggers that is likely to back Cameron but he is listed as a Davis supporter.


With apologies - Peter Viggers should be in the Davis list and not as a potential Cameron backer.

Selsdon Man

Likely Clarke supporters include John Butterfill, James Clappison, Quentin Davies, Christopher Fraser, Douglas Hogg,John Horam, Michael Jack, Robert Key, Michael Mates, Malcolm Moss, Patrick McLoughlin, Anne McIntosh, Richard Ottaway and Keith Simpson.

Nick Hurd may back either Clarke or Cameron.


Liam had all those backers pretty much on day one and his total is eight while Cameron's is twelve. Liam Fox was high profile before but the press don't care about him and to be honest until yesterday he didn't say anything to make them care. He is, though, a valid candidate. Your assertion that Cameron is on his way out is premature at best. Cameron started as an unknown, and has earned endorsements from journalists and MPs. True Ken might have overshadowed him and everyone else this week, but Cameron is much stronger now than he was at the election, I don't think Liam Fox is any better off.

Samuel Coates

I can't remember his recognition factor in the polls, but Fox should be well known as he was the partys face on tv for quite a while.
Who would he endorse if he pulled out I wonder?

James Hellyer

AnotherNick, I refer you to their undeclared support as stated in The Times: " Mr Clarke 25 to 30, Mr Cameron 25 to 30 and Dr Fox 20 to 30."

Cameron has had the advantage of being identified as the stop-Davis candidate early on. It's also suited the media to present it as a Davis-Cameron run off. Ken Clarke standing changes all that, as a lot of his supporters were previously inclined to Cameron. That this has Cameron hard was apparent from both his hurried reponse to the Clarke launch, his lurch to the right, and the immediate call of papers like the Mail that he stands aside.

The longer a Clarke candidacy drags on for, the more chance there is that Cameron will no longer be seen as the stop-Davis candidate. Those MPs will head to Clarke, while the stop Clarke movement backs Davis.

Until now, Dr Fox has achieved a similar level of support to Cameron and Clarke without campaigning. He's been the only one who has seemed to follow Howard's intentions for the extended contest, by focussing on what our convictions should be.

After his explosive contribution on "soap opera politics" last Sunday, and with him now backing members retaining their voting rights, he should be able to gain some momentum, not least because he doesn't appear to have the large anti-votes that dog Davis, Cameron and Clarke.


It is a key time for Cameron, but he's still very much in this. Dr Fox needs to actually show he wants the job!

I do agree with James in so much as so far we haven't seen a "stop-Fox" campaign in the way there seems to be with Davis, Cameron & Clarke and that may prove significant.


What happend to Liam Fox's launch, if it's been I can't find coverage. So I'm thinking is it this evening? For someone with "40" backers I'd expected more fuss.

James Hellyer

I understand the News of the World got the day wrong and every other source copied the error.

It should be Thursday.


Cheers, it did seem odd that there was no coverage.


Yes: it is Thursday.

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