+++ 2/3rds of Tory Grassroots Want Tax Cuts +++

ConservativeHome’s monthly survey is out.

LibDem’s Choose Dullest Candidate to be Party President Lembit Goes Nuclear

Guido despairs of the sandalistas sometimes. Why choose someone so dull and weak? Ros Scott burst into tears at one hustings because the questioning was mildly tough. They had a choice between someone who has a high media profile, someone energetic and someone who is nice but completely in the LibDem comfort zone. They opted for the latter when the problem is the LibDems are in serious trouble electorally. They have just lost their deposit in a by-election. Membership is at the lowest it has been in living memory, down to just a mere 60,357.

Presidential Election Votes Cast
Ros Scott: 20,736 votes (72%)
Lembit Öpik: 6247 votes (22%)
Chandila Fernando: 1799 votes (6%)

Lembit now says is going to campaign for some of his hobby horses – one of which is a “reassessment of our [LibDem] attitude towards nuclear power”. Presumably he wants to move the LibDems towards supporting nuclear power.

Lessons for Gordon and Dave

NZ Labour ran on exactly Gordon’s U.S.P.*, and it didn’t work. The voters in New Zealand overwhelmingly disagreed with Labour’s message, change and tax cuts won big in New Zealand. The “novice” promising tax cuts won.

Danny Finkelstein says voters don’t believe politician’s promises of tax cuts, Fink argues there is a credibility issue. John Key’s first manifesto pledge gave the three actual dates he would cut personal taxes for New Zealanders, a promise to take to the bank. His party won big.

Obama, another novice, ran promising tax cuts for 95% of Americans. The “novice” promising tax cuts won.

The incoherent Tory response to the financial crisis is manifestly weak, Osborne’s performance has disheartened even his own supporters, the lack of a clear message has weakened their credibility on economic issues significantly in the polls. Maybe Michael Ashcroft will have learnt something useful during his recent time with the NZ Nats that will influence the Tories for the better.

Times have changed, voters want the pendulum to swing back from spending towards tax cuts. Rumours are circulating in the Westminster Village that Gordon and Alastair are preparing to announce tax cuts. Which will, even if they are only rhetorical tax cuts, in a stroke make Dave and George look ridiculous as both Labour and the LibDems promise tax cuts and the Tories are left high and dry stranded on the high tax centre ground with only Danny Finkelstein for company. The old strategy may have been strategically right during the decontamination phase of Cameron’s leadership, it is so wrong for now. The recent electoral lessons from the rest of the English speaking world show that to “seal the deal” people now need a positive reason to vote for the Tories.

See also: NZ Nats Tax Calculator.

*Unique Selling Point



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Quote of the Day

David Cowling, the BBC’s head of political research, in an internal memo…

“It seems to me that the London bubble has to burst if there is to be any prospect of addressing the issues that have brought us to our current situation. There are many millions of people in the UK who do not enthuse about diversity and do not embrace metropolitan values yet do not consider themselves lesser human beings for all that. Until their values and opinions are acknowledged and respected, rather than ignored and despised, our present discord will persist. Because these discontents run very wide and very deep and the metropolitan political class, confronted by them, seems completely bewildered and at a loss about how to respond (“who are these ghastly people and where do they come from?” doesn’t really hack it). The 2016 EU referendum has witnessed the cashing in of some very bitter bankable grudges but I believe that, throughout this 2016 campaign, Europe has been the shadow not the substance.”

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