Sunday, October 04, 2009

49 per cent of voters "don't really know what David Cameron stands for".

Sticking with the subject of Cameron, if I may, a recent opinion poll has revealed what many of us suspected: Cameron's popularity is based solely on the fact that he is not Gordon Brown, with a huge amount of Brits admitting that they have no idea what it is that he stands for. Which, when one considers the fact that he has been Tory leader for almost four years, is an almost staggering achievement.

But the poll revealed that 49 per cent of voters "don't really know what David Cameron stands for", against 47 per cent who said they did. Among C2, D and E voters – the typical readership of The Sun – the proportion is even higher – 53 per cent.

This finding echoes research by the IoS into Mr Cameron and his party's policies on a number of key areas. It also suggests that voters are still confused after nearly four years of his leadership which began with his striking decontamination strategy but has ended with the Tories giving more prominence to their party's more traditional positions on law and order, Europe, immigration and public spending.

It's no wonder voters are confused because the early Cameron was a sort of "Hug a Hoodie", "Vote Blue, Go Green" amalgam of everything that the Tories were not. He was promising to take his party in a whole new direction, but then the credit crunch took place and Cameron's Tory party began to sound very like "the nasty party" which he had been elected to transform.

Suddenly, massive cuts in social spending seemed to be the order of the day and Cameron was actually arguing - and he was unique almost world-wide in making this argument - that the recession should be allowed to bite as hard and deep as it wanted and that the Tories would not intervene. He chided Brown for wasting UK money in bailouts, which he regarded as throwing good money after bad. It appeared to me at that point that Cameron had not yet grasped the fact that the Reagan/Thatcher economic model - to which Cameron is still clinging - had been utterly discredited. And Brown is right when he states that Cameron, especially when it comes to economics, is leading the "Do Nothing" party, for that was his only proposal during the recent financial meltdown.

On the one occasion when Cameron was asked to make a call - what to do in a credit crunch - he made the wrong call. And, at the moment, we have nothing else of substance on which to judge this man.

Even his hard won respect as a Tory leader who understands the need for his party to embrace environmentalism was undermined when he listed "10 key pledges" last week and not one of them regarded the environment.
Thus Mr Cameron presented a list of 10 "key pledges" to The Sun last week as a thank-you for its spiteful sabotage of Mr Brown's speech: not one of them related to the environment. Greg Clark, the Tory climate change spokesman, in his interview with The Independent on Sunday today, is forced into the feeble defence that green policies are so central to the party's thinking that they do not need to be mentioned.
So, it is no surprise that so many British voters have no idea of who David Cameron is. He really has done an astonishing job over the past four years of avoiding telling us what he stands for at all costs.

The glimpses which we have gained - during the credit crunch or regarding who he chooses to hang around with in Europe - are not reassuring.

And, even though The Sun newspaper have to great fanfare announced that they will back him, the newspapers owner remains unconvinced by what he has so far seen:

In a further blow to Mr Cameron, Rupert Murdoch's biographer Michael Wolff, writing in The Independent on Sunday today, says the owner of The Sun newspaper is sceptical about the would-be prime minister. Mr Wolff quotes Mr Murdoch saying of David Cameron: "I don't take him seriously. Who would?"

Were it not for the fact that the British press are already running with their own narrative that "The King is dead, long live the King" regarding Gordon Brown; then they would be asking much more substantive questions about this Tory leader who may very well be our next Prime Minister.

Such as, what do you actually believe in? I really would like an answer to that question before we sleepwalk this man into No 10.


Breakdown of the people in the Eton picture:

1) Sebastian Grigg

2) David Cameron

3) Ralph Perry Robinson

4) Ewen Fergusson

5) Matthew Benson

6) Sebastian James

7) Jonathan Ford

8) Boris Johnson

9) Harry Eastwood

Can you imagine any of them seriously wanting to "Hug a Hoodie"?

Click title for full article.

No comments: