Grayling leads ‘raid’ on Labour’s ‘core vote’…

The Daily Telegraph has this piece;

“Gordon Brown has “let down the poor”, despite claiming that ending poverty was his defining purpose, Chris Grayling, the shadow home secretary, will say.

Mr Grayling will lead the Conservatives’ most aggressive raid so far on Labour’s core support, in a fresh campaign centring on fixing “Broken Britain”.”

How the Conservatives can keep a straight-face through all this is beyond me; on the one hand they want to say ‘we are here to help’ but insist on saying with their other ‘Broken Britain’ voice ‘you are the problem’. It is a delicate balancing act that they try to maintain; on the one hand giving Labour’s disillusioned core -vote a nudge and a wink saying you are safe with us but trying to keep their natural constituency onside. When they get into government leaked ‘suggestive’ stories that ‘middle-class benefits will be cut’ won’t be able to take the place of hard policy decisions and their impact.

Their ‘detailed study’ showing that crime is most likely to affect the poor is hardly shocking; wealthy people can naturally afford better deterrents and are therefore less likely to be burgled, for example, one would assume. So, no shock that those in social housing are likely to be burgled then but what is the Conservatives solution? It is to give people the right to wander the country far-and-wide and a muddled policy on social housing that is a rather sad attempt to emulate Margaret Thatcher’s success with ‘Right to Buy’.

This shows where the dichotomy between Conservative rhetoric and action lies; and increasingly the tension between what the Conservatives say and do will become apparent.  Although they may claim to be progressive I think it says an awful lot about a party that it trumpets cuts in inheritance tax and a a revocation of the ban on hunting as priorities.  As they enter government, the tensions within the party will become clear and a Conservative government will not be what people expect.  David Cameron will be a lonely figure in his own party if the latest poll of Conservative backbenches over the NHS is to be believed with 62% of them defiantly not ‘loving the NHS’.  I rather suspect that this charm offensive will only succeed through a negative rejection of Labour and that those that do see something in ‘Progressive Conservatism’ will soon be disappointed.

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About darrellgoodliffe

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