Why has Theresa May fired David Jones?

I ask that question as I do not know the answer to it. David Jones has always struck me as a very able minister. He is a former Secretary of State for Wales. He is an experienced operator, and along with David Davis and colleagues, has managed to build-up a department from scratch in just under a year.

Jones is also a Leaver. He was very effective in Wales during last year’s EU Referendum. What is Theresa May up to? After performing so badly at the polls last week, the fears of many that she is preparing to water down Brexit will resurface. After Jones’ sacking, the optics are bad.

Has she learned anything from her humiliation last week?

 

You are in office, but not in power, Prime Minister. You have to go

I didn’t see that election result coming, although if I had used some foresight, I would have done.

I made a number of predictions about Labour marginals before Theresa May launched the Conservative manifesto. Until then, I firmly believe that all was well. The campaign wasn’t very good at that point, however, there was time for improvement.

After the manifesto was launched, the wheels came off. Theresa May couldn’t even admit she had performed a U-turn on the so-called “dementia tax”. The campaign was too presidential. Saying “me and my team” is not only an incorrect use of English grammar, it also makes Theresa May look self-centred. Continue reading “You are in office, but not in power, Prime Minister. You have to go”

Now is the time for Conservatives to hold their nerve

A general election campaign wouldn’t be the same if the Conservative Party didn’t have a wobble. The Thursday a week before election day in 1987 was known as “Wobbly Thursday”. A rogue poll in the Daily Telegraph showed the Conservative lead down to just four points. Panic ensued. A week later, Margaret Thatcher secured a third term in office with a majority of 102.

There is a trend in the polls at the moment which appears to show Labour closing the gap. This is hardly surprising. I don’t think anyone seriously thought that the Conservatives were twenty points ahead. But although I don’t think that the Conservatives will get 400+ seats (something I thought highly likely a month ago), I do think it is still possible that they will gain an extra 50 seats. Something around that figure would give Theresa May a landslide 100+ seat majority.

I’ve come to this conclusion for two main reasons. Continue reading “Now is the time for Conservatives to hold their nerve”

Brief thoughts ahead of tonight’s ‘The Battle for Number 10’

Jeremy Corbyn is a natural campaigner. He’s been doing that all his life. Theresa May is not someone who seeks the limelight, and quite often goes underground whenever there are difficult questions that need answering. In that respect, she has much in common with Gordon Brown.

I think Jeremy Corbyn will do much better answering questions from the studio audience, but will not come out on top after his interview with Jeremy Paxman. I think the opposite will be true regarding Theresa May. Continue reading “Brief thoughts ahead of tonight’s ‘The Battle for Number 10’”

Is the Conservative Party trying to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory?

I was looking through some old articles I had written before the 2010 general election.¬†Although we now have a Conservative Prime Minister, and taking into account that all of the main party leaders have changed and Labour should be a basket case under Jeremy Corbyn, it’s amazing how so many of the issues covered in the article are still relevant today.

Immigration is still a major issue. The current Government is still nowhere near eliminating the deficit – and Government debt is now not far off double what it was in 2010. Theresa May still pursues many of the anti-libertarian policies we saw under Labour in the Blair/Brown years. Economically, the Conservative Party is moving in a leftwards direction under May, and even more so rejects free market policies in favour of state intervention.

Back in February 2010, I thought there would be a hung Parliament, and I couldn’t say which party would be the largest.

At this general election, I would be shocked if Jeremy Corbyn became Prime Minister, but the cock-up over the so-called ‘dementia tax’, coupled with what is in general a very disappointing manifesto, you could be forgiven for thinking that the Conservatives are doing everything they can to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. Continue reading “Is the Conservative Party trying to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory?”