After Jeremy Corbyn tried to wrap himself in the Union Jack by declaring his love of Britain, David Cameron sought yesterday to show him how it was done. In a rhetorical love letter to the nation, the Prime Minister spoke of his vision for a “Greater Britain”, touching on themes he had been more muted on during coalition like social mobility and inequality. ‘You can’t have true opportunity without real equality. And I want our party to get this right,” he explained.
The Tory leader’s speech quickly drew plaudits, with George Osborne hailing it the “best speech I have ever heard [him] deliver”. Writing in today’s paper, Jesse Norman said that Cameron “moved the centre ground towards his party”, while Dan Hodges concluded: “The socially progressive Left has a new leader”. Allister Heath agreed with his call for a “national crusade for house-building”, but felt he could have gone much further. “[The Tories] need to start embracing sensible, well-managed development: if not, the party will soon find out that it is either on the side of aspiring homeowners, or it is nothing,” he wrote. The Guardian was cautious, praising his “reformer’s speech” but telling readers to “check against delivery”. The paper splashed this morning on the potential impact of Cameron’s tax credit cuts in his “all-out assault on poverty”, reporting on Resolution Foundation research warning that they could leave 200,000 more working households in poverty by 2020.
David Cameron’s speech was over 6,600 words long, with just a few sentences devoted to delivering his strongest attack yet on Jeremy Corbyn. Never naming him, Cameron tore into the “new Labour leader” and his “security-threatening, terrorist-sympathising, Britain-hating ideology.” Depicting Corbyn as a man who hates Britain may be crude, but – as Alastair Campbell told HuffPost – it will likely be “effective”, with the Metro splashing on his attack. Polls show that most Britons feel patriotic, and that they shied away from Labour in May – amid Tory claims that Ed Miliband would “stab Britain in the back” – as they feared he would be “bossed around” by the SNP.
The Tories have identified a weak point in Corbyn’s image, which they’re already exploiting. The fact that Cameron boasted of receiving a letter from a former Labour supporting RAF veteran in his speech, while Corbyn gets headlines about “snubbing the Queen”, accentuates this patriotic divide. If voters feel the new Labour leader doesn’t love his country, will they ever love him?
“Why did all the pollsters and the pundits get it so wrong?…Britain and Twitter are not the same thing”
Britain must back deeper integration of the European Union or quit altogether, Francois Hollande, the French president, declared on Wednesday night during furious exchanges with Nigel Farage.
The BBC Trust should be scrapped and have its powers transferred to a new board and an independent regulator for the first time in its history, the corporation has conceded.
Nothing But The Ruth
Ruth Davidson has urged the Conservatives to revive their “blue-collar” support by convincing voters that “the sun is coming up” after years of economic hardship. She also appealed to Labour and Liberal Democrat voters to help protect the Union by giving their “second vote” in next year’s Holyrood elections to the Conservatives.
They are expected to go head-to-head in a clash of the interviewing titans, after ITV announced a brand new Sunday morning political show. And Andrew Marr has wasted no time in dealing the first blow in the battle with Robert Peston, warning his former colleague he must keep his ego in check and remember “it’s not about him”.