Cameron under Pressure to Widen His Party's Appeal ; POLITICS

By Morris, Nigel | The Independent (London, England), July 3, 2007 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

Cameron under Pressure to Widen His Party's Appeal ; POLITICS


Morris, Nigel, The Independent (London, England)


Senior Conservatives attempted to soothe the increasingly febrile mood in the party's ranks yesterday after David Cameron was accused of failing to extend the party's appeal beyond a metropolitan elite.

Mr Cameron faces the worst crisis of his 19-month leadership amid growing alarm over the Tories' slide in the opinion polls triggered by Gordon Brown's arrival in Downing Street.

After reports of dissent among the Tory leader's inner circle, William Hague, the shadow Foreign Secretary, and David Davis, the shadow Home Secretary, appealed for calm and made clear they backed his determination to focus on the political centre ground.

But Mr Cameron's woes were heightened when Graham Brady, who quit the Tory front bench during the grammar schools row, delivered a withering assessment of his narrow electoral appeal.

Mr Brady protested that the changes under Mr Cameron had been "better at reaching out to a more small 'l' liberal, metropolitan mindset".

But he added: "[They] have not been making the same impact further away from L ondon - in the North, the Midlands, in places which really are an absolutely key electoral battlefield if we're going to win a general election. I think some of it is about the issues that David Cameron has chosen to focus more on, and some of it is about just tone."

Mr Brady, the MP for Altrincham and Sale West, told BBC Radio 4's The World This Weekend that the party quickly needed to get the balance right between the messages it sent to different groups of voters.

But Mr Hague insisted that Mr Cameron had done "wonders" for the Tories in a short period and dismissed his critics as a tiny minority.

"David Cameron has a very broad national appeal ... I don't think it is an appeal that is confined to the metropolitan areas. That is just not the evidence," he told BBC News 24's Sunday. Mr Hague said the party had made its biggest advance in the north of England for years in the local elections in May. He said: "I don't buy this argument that Conservatives can only make progress in certain parts of the country.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

Cameron under Pressure to Widen His Party's Appeal ; POLITICS
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?