Mark Twain said, "'The reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated," when a newspaper mixed him up with a dying relative, and the Labour Party could do worse than to adopt this as their new slogan because the red flag may not be flying, but it's certainly fluttering gently in the breeze.
A few short months ago it was the Conservative Party 15% ahead in all the polls, the Murdoch Press had abandoned Labour and we were preparing for a Tory Government and the burial of the Labour Party.
Today, a YouGov survey for The Sunday Times gives the Conservatives a 2% lead, so where did it all go wrong for David Cameron that he is seemingly finding it so difficult to bury such an unpopular Government? One of the reasons was touched upon in December, with Gordon Brown's comment that the Conservatives' idea for an Inheritance Tax was "dreamed up on the playing fields of Eton." The Conservatives predictably slated Brown for bringing class into it, but it seems that evoking the privileged background of senior Tories, when they are attempting to form a connection to the 99.99% of the country who were not schooled in Oxbridge, struck a chord with the electorate. Cameron argued that "What people are interested in is not where you come from but where you're going to," which shows a strong lack of knowledge of the people he is asking to vote him into power, because where one comes from is very important in class divided Britain. The photograph of Cameron in the top hat and tails of the Bullingdon Club where membership is by invitation only and reserved only for the wealthiest Oxford students was the first of the drip drip of revelations that Cameron was a "toff."
His party members were embroiled in the expenses scandal with claims for moat cleaning and tennis court maintenance, and Conservatives MP Anthony Steen ranting that he was disliked because of jealousy over his "very, very large house. Some people say it looks like Balmoral." It is hard to connect with voters who don't have moats, tennis courts or homes like Balmoral, and that is why David Cameron and his party are sweating over how they have been pegged back by a party that has a track record which includes Afghanistan, Iraq, the expenses scandal, 10% tax rate debacle, billion-pound payouts to the financial markets, the non-referendum on the EU Lisbon Treaty, the worst recession since the 1930s and a leader outed as a bully.
It seems that possibly the British electorate are taking the view of better the inept devil you know than the posh one that you don't.Powered by Sidelines