13 April 2010

Meanwhile, out on the hustings

Tom Bradby has has been chatting to Tory candidates (he says they are MPs, which is an error) who have been out and about:

After five years of re-branding and countless pounds spent, much of the country remains resistant to the charm offensive. As our poll indicates again tonight, we appear to be heading squarely for a hung parliament, perhaps even one in which Labour is returned as the largest party.

Speaking to Tory MPs over the past couple of days, it is pretty clear why. The party will, they say, do well enough on current soundings in the South and the Midlands, but the North remains a real battleground. I’m told that the mood on the doorstep is sceptical, particularly amongst those further down the income scale. They don’t like Mr Cameron’s casual jackets. They don’t care for the way he ditches his tie at every opportunity. They wish he would talk more about immigration and jobs and less about cuts.

They don’t have a lot of leeway in their lives and they are very uncertain what the Tories are going to do for them that is in any way appealing.

Let’s leave to one side Cameron's dress code, the important finding is the one the Tories failed to address today: ‘What are you going to do for me?’

That is the question that both Labour and the Tories have to answer over the next three weeks, as well as being rather more honest with voters about the painful medicine  they are going to have to swallow after polling day.

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1 comment:

  1. It would be great to think that the voters are that ready to face the truth, but where's your evidence?

    The one time it's been tried by any party with a real chance of actually putting it into practice, last autumn when the Conservatives started to lay out some truths about austerity, their poll lead dropped sharply.

    Now, maybe it would have been different if that hadn't been received with a chorus of "Tories' savage cuts" from Labour - who you constantly seem to find less worthy of criticism than Cameron - but as it is, the fact seems to show pretty clearly that austerity doesn't sell.