There is no end of the lesson. The Tories are to launch another poster campaign. This one will concentrate on Gordon Brown and his handling of the economy:
The second wave of posters will concentrate on Mr Brown and seek to convince voters that he is personally responsible for the state of Britain’s public finances.
It just so happens that the dear old economy could well be delivering a few goodies in time for the Budget. With borrowing down, tax receipts up and headline unemployment falling, Brown and Darling will have a few sweets to hand out to keep the patient happy until after the election. Team Cameron may well find themselves flatfooted next Wednesday.
The Tory message is negative, it’s frightening the horses, there are too many U-turns and they get the vital ingredient of timing wrong.
Then there is the messenger, the one man band called David Cameron. He fails at every hurdle to act like a Prime Minister-in-waiting. This week his priority has been poking his nose into internal workings of the Labour party, when he should be tidying up his own backyard.
Bagsshot has this to say:
Then there is the main asset himself, Mr Cameron. He is nimble and appealing enough to shine in the campaign and the forthcoming leaders’ debates. But—no two ways about it—he has been underperforming. At his party’s spring conference, he repeated his trick of speaking without notes. This time he came across rather as a tired music-hall act, relying too much on a vintage routine. That came after his botched remarks on his putative marriage tax-break, and an ill-judged poster campaign featuring his pampered visage—and before the debacle over Lord Ashcroft’s tax status, which Mr Cameron should have headed off years ago.
Now we move to the polls. However the figures are dressed up, they are dreadful for the Tories. With the dissolution three weeks away, the gap with Labour should be widening, but it isn't.
Forget the leaders’ debates, the Budget will define the election campaign. With Peter Mandelson breathing down the necks of Gordon Brown and Alistair Darling, there is little doubt that Labour will get its strategy right and leave the Tories in no man’s land.
The Tory party need to get out of the children's playground, because next Wednesday at 12.30 the deadly game of politics for adults kicks off, orchestrated by a team that has already bagged three gold medals.