- Will the Conservatives be able to retain their voters from the 2010 election?
- Does George Osborne have the political judgement, vision and leadership to be one of the best Chancellors of his generation?
Below is the view of a colleague, John Gelmini, another lifelong Tory which I broadly endorse :
It all depends on the overall condition of the economy and whether or not key groups of voters feel more prosperous by the time of the next election.
Most people know perfectly well that unless they are earning at least £250,000 GBP a year, no political party is remotely interested in their concerns or what they think.
As someone who experienced racism as a very small boy, plus the bullying that went with it, I have been able to compare attitudes then and now to see what change there has been.
In cities like London, which is very cosmopolitan, there has been change but move out into the country towards “Middlemarch” the difference I notice is the loudness of people’s comments.
In my childhood, which preceded political correctness and the Equalities Act the scapegoats were different but the voices were loud, now the same things are expressed “sotto voce” or in more coded language or as Jeremy Clarkson style jokes of the kind he pulled when he had a toilet seat built into the boot of a car for one of his programmes filmed in India. The Indian Government were quick to complain about Clarkson and the BBC but with David Cameron for a personal friend there was little chance of their protests getting anywhere.
As a lifelong Conservative, I have never felt represented by the party, it is simply an organisation which used to stand for things which I believe in, strong defence, low taxes, lite-touch regulation, sound money, relative freedom of choice, strong law and order and a pro business stance.
Whilst I have my doubts about whether this is still the case, as much as it was or should be, I have no doubt that the Liberal Democrats and Milliband’s Labour Party do not believe in any of these things at all.
The litmus test for me and for most people including ethnic minorities is future prosperity and whether or not the Government is doing everything that can and should be done to ensure that this comes back within a reasonable period of time.
So far, the evidence is that the Government has been moving far too slowly on job creation either via public works or, as I would favour, rapid export led growth. It has also been too soft on the banks and has shown shameful weakness in the face of pressure from the medical profession, local authority CEOs, public sector trades unions, militant postal workers, NIMBIES, teachers and Foreign Office Mandarins intent on selling the country down the river.
The election is still very much David Cameron’s to lose but after 18 months in cahoots with the fractious Liberal Democrats he and the Chancellor have in reality got less than 2 years in which to turn things around rather than the 3.5 years he thought he had until the end of a fixed term Parliament in 2015. This not least because the economy will get worse before it gets better, there is no coherent growth strategy, the public still believe that the world owes them a living, the business community above Mid Cap level is too complacent, David Cameron is too relaxed and already sees himself in his new United Nations role and Labour will soon have a new leader to replace the ineffectual Milliband.