December 9, 2005


Cameron must deal with hard cases too (Ferdinand Mount, 09/12/2005, Daily Telegraph)

Within 48 hours of being elected, David Cameron has cheered his party up immensely. Indeed, this cheering-up effect spread to several people I met who said they had never voted Conservative and probably never would, but they found it all surprisingly refreshing. And he has done it partly by changing the subject.

Instead of battering on remorselessly about tax, crime and immigration, he is switching the immediate focus to climate change, reading skills, work/life balance and social justice.

It is this change of subject that has unsettled Tony Blair and the Labour Party just as much as Cameron's more publicised offer to support the Government whenever he thinks it is doing the right thing.

Labour is nonplussed, just as the Conservatives were when they first had to confront Blair. "Same old Tories," chunters Ian McCartney, the Labour Party chairman, in his daily e-mail to me (I am beginning to find political junk mail almost as annoying and implausible as the ads for cheap Rolexes and Viagra).

But they don't sound like the same old Tories, and the wider public has sensed this, rather quicker, I fancy, than many newspapers, especially the Murdoch press, which seems oddly grudging and hesitant.

This has been the story throughout the Cameron campaign. Far from him being a media creation, many voices in the media have been rather slower to cotton on that something interesting might be happening than were the supposed old fogeys in the constituencies.

Five years on most folks haven't even figured out the thoroughly transparent George Bush yet.

Posted by Orrin Judd at December 9, 2005 12:00 AM

If they admitted that he simply does what he says, they'd be admitting that there's no need for talking-head pundits to analyze his policies. Can't have that.

Posted by: Tom at December 10, 2005 12:38 PM
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