October 29, 2005


Right-wingers back Cameron for leader (Melissa Kite, 29/10/2005, Daily Telegraph)

A powerful group of Right-wingers is set to throw its weight behind David Cameron in the Tory leadership campaign.

Members of the Cornerstone Group, including allies of the former party leader Iain Duncan Smith will announce in the coming days that they believe Mr Cameron is the best choice to take the party forward.

The 25-strong group previously backed Liam Fox, who was knocked out of the race on October 20, and the decision of many to switch allegiance to Mr Cameron is a surprise because he has so far drawn most of his support from the party's Centre, Left and modernising wings. [...]

Mr Cameron has been courting Right-wing MPs for weeks. John Hayes, the MP for South Holland and the Deepings and a leading member of Cornerstone, said: "After the departure of Liam Fox from the race we needed a period of reflection. We will be making an announcement within the next week or so."

Another member of the group explained: "Cameron has made a big impression on key figures on the Right. He is much more socially Conservative than people think.

"You should not assume Cameron is instinctively close to people like Portillo. The modernisers think they are telling him what to do, but they are overplaying their hand.

"We think he will carry forward the agenda of compassionate Conservatism articulated by IDS."

A Tory Party that returned to the Third Way could help Blair and Brown get some big time reforms through.

Posted by Orrin Judd at October 29, 2005 9:04 PM
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