Wednesday, 21 March 2007

Cameron allies denigrate Conservative Home and Tory activists in general

A couple of interesting comments from David Cameron’s camp in Monday’s Times.

[T]hose close to Mr Cameron [pointed] out that the Conservative membership was not representative of the country as a whole. “A quarter of a million people are members of the Tory party. The important point is that’s less than one per cent of the electorate,” said a party source.

I seem to remember another party leader building his career by riding roughshod over his party. I agree that governments should answer to and respond to the electorate rather than just their activists. But leaders should not assume that they are more in tune with the masses than tens of thousands of party members. Otherwise we get policy-making by polling-agent and government by focus-group. That is where that other party leader ended up. Is there no end to how much Cameron will emulate Blair?

Then, for good measure, a spokesman decided to slag off Conservative Home (for which I have some sympathy!).

A senior Tory close to Mr Cameron said: “It’s 30 people talking to 30 people. People sometimes assume it represents a bigger slice of the party. But it represents a specific strand of thinking.”
True, but I would caution against attacking your own base too often!

No comments: