Sunday, October 09, 2005
The Tory Leadership hots up
Despite his spin doctors trying to lower expectation and saying that Davis was not a natural speaker, he managed to succeed all expectation and delivered a particularly leaden speech. The only live wire is Ken Clarke but as discussed – the party will ensure that he doesn’t get elected. I would imagine that Rifkind’s supporters may go to Clarke and Fox’s supporters may split between Davis and Cameron. This will probably squeeze Ken out leaving a choice between the dull and the inexperienced.
Now that the Tories feel they have found their Tory version of Blair – fresh-faced modernizer saying nothing of any substance – it will be interesting to see how fast Davis’s campaign sinks. Davis seems to think that being a Tory from a council house with a single mother gives him an interesting angle. Does it really matter? What single mothers from council houses along with everyone else want to know is what his policies are. Problem is that it’s hard to concentrate when listening to him drone on. A tad unfair perhaps but can you imagine an election with Brown vs Davis? It would be like watching two walls with fresh paint – wondering which shade of grey will dry fastest. Come back John Major – all is forgiven!
If they do plump for Cameron it shows that the party hasn’t learnt from the debacle of William Hague. Just because you are young it doesn’t mean the voters won’t see through paper-thin policies varnished with an inch of gloss. Why try to out-Blair Blair? They seem to like Cameron and yet they do not know what he stands for. As for Fox and Rifkind – these two are essentially lightweights. Fox have a chance of getting down to the final two – and he seems the only one to have a definite policy. Unfortunately that policy is to leave the European Union which despite the UK being eurosceptic isn’t really going to attract many voters except from a few disgruntled UKip voters returning to the fold. Finally Rifkind, despite being an ex-Foreign Minister and a one nation tory is about as inspiring as a withered asparagus.
If the Tories were really brave it would allow their party to choose which leader out of the five contenders. Unfortunately these were the same people who elected IDS. Overall I believe the only person who could give Brown a run for his money at the next election would be Clarke. This wouldn’t be good news for the Liberal Democrats – but yet it would make the next election more of a fight between the three main parties. Yet it seems the Tory party is hell-bent on losing the next election before it even begins. Good for Brown and Kennedy maybe but after 8 years of Blair and his adventures in war – this is surely bad for democracy.
Strangely enough watching the Tories over the last decade and their ever-changing leaders reminds me of all those actors who have played Doctor Who during the 80s and beyond. The Tories have had their Tom Baker in Margaret Thatcher but now they are going through a myriad of dull and uninspired replacements like Peter Davidson, Colin Baker, Sylvester McCoy, Paul McGann etc. Are they going to find their Christopher Eccleston to run for one season and get their audience interested in their out of date, wobbly set policies or are they just going to blow their budget on special effects and hope a talent less but pretty boy actor hoodwinks the audience to liking them? I used to like Doctor Who but l grew out of it. Let see if the British voter ever get 80s nostalgia for the Tories.