Thursday, January 15, 2009

What Is The Hurry?

There have been a few opinions in the blogosphere in the last week or so urging David Cameron to have his re-shuffle and be done with it. Where as I understand points being made and that it seems that Cameron is dithering a bit.

I say, why hurry?

There has been some good opinions and debate heard because of this speculation. The MSM does not deem much going on in Westminster to be sexy enough to write about, so we are getting re-shuffle stories.

When the talk moves to Osborne and the Shadow Chancellors job the points made are that Osborne is a good operative, but perhaps not best suited to this particular position. We See instead that the real big beast here is John Redwood, who is doing such a good job in a proxy-shadow chancellor role, especially through his Blog and newspaper work that David Cameron will probably feel safe enough to keep Osborne by his side as Shadow Chancellor.... until elected at least. The Tories are the party with a selection of people who can speak well on the economy. Point being, David Cameron could be viewed as making The Economy his top priority, so much so that he has placed his most trusted and valued advisor in the role to help shape that vision.

Discussion over William Hague has reminded Conservatives that they do have candidates who can play well in the North of England, and that there are people in David Cameron's circle that are not of the Bullingdon Club. Hague is is allowed to speak on EU Sceptic issues (If perhaps not as often as some would like to hear.)

Talk of Alan Duncan's position has reminded Conservatives of a few matters. Firstly he serves as an example of inclusion within the party. Secondly that inclusion is not trumpeted, and points are not attempted to be made off of Mr Duncan's personal business. His position was secured of professional merit, not to pad out the party manifesto or meet a quota. Thirdly, Mandleson's return, in the Lords requires someone to shadow him exclusively. And fourthly, how quick public opinion, especially at the grass roots of the Conservative Party will turn if personal attacks are conducted via the media.

Ken Clarke's heralded return reminds the Conservatives where they were in the 1990's and that if they do attain power they strive to rebut the arrogance that comes from holding office. I shudder at the notion that Ken Clarke could one day be making key decisions on the EU and The Euro - however, he is a conservative and they will get attacked on Europe forever more until the Conservative Party can find a way to talk about it without imploding. Having Ken at the table can remind the top team of the what they can and can not do because of the EU, and how they can avoid stoking the EU debate in the wrong direction. [Though i acknowledge, this is pretty much on Kens terms and for as long as he decides he wants to do that].

I do not share the opinion that Ken Clarke is "The Big Beast", I do not find him a convincing communicator, and I feel he serves as a reminder of a bitter past. Better then that he can talk to those issue directly. He also can bring in support that no other Tory can, something that might tip the balance between a hung parliament and a Conservative Government. As long as Ken Clarke is on board, and David Cameron is honest about the extent Ken Clarke can reach in terms of Ministerial position it may work.

The point to all this is that some of these issues in the recent past would have been very negative talking points in the MSM and the debate would possibly have made the Conservatives look bad to floating voters (EU, Economy, Party Inclusion, Ministers in the Lords etc...). That has not happened. David Cameron has stalled on the proposed re-shuffle, but he isn't having his hand forced on decisions, there is no real question of indecisiveness, only the fear of being perceived as such. Imagine how this would all be playing out in the media if it was Gordon Brown stalling over a re-shuffle.

It also shows that Conservatives do not know how to spin. The official line should be that David Cameron is wading through an extensive list of impressive CV's to determine, in his estimation the very best shadow cabinet available and one in which the people of the UK deserve. This is going to take a little time. The current shadow cabinet is functioning so well that the leader feels no need to make decisions in haste. There, simple really.

I am myself still an undecided voter, but the I just feel it was worth mentioning that the Conservatives are appearing more and more as an electable, desirable party.

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