Guido noticed the less than subtle use by Labour since the new year of the term “Tory-led government” in every media hit or speech, but he didn’t realise Miliband’s bad-boy spinner Tom Baldwin was quite so brazen in his attempts to sign the media up to the theme. This went out to all the media:
As you may have noticed, we have changed our language in recent weeks to avoid describing the Government as a coalition or a partnership of equals. We believe a more accurate description is that this is a Conservative-led government. I understand that the phrase a “Tory-led government” is two words too long to be repeated on every occasion. But I also think that you are making a choice whenever you call it “the coalition”. When we were in power, no one was left in any doubt that our most unpopular decisions were those of a “Labour government”.
The word “Coalition” is one that avoids party labels while also suggesting a degree of inter-party harmony and co-operation which is, day-by-day and split-by-split, being shown as false. Unless Nick Boles gets his way, “the Coalition” will not be standing for election.
Can I suggest you at least vary your description of this Tory-led government. On some occasions, you might call it a Conservative-Liberal Democrat government. On others it might be just “the government”.
When you are talking about this government in a political context, I think it would be fairer to refer to it by reference to party labels.
With best wishes, Tom Baldwin,
Director of Strategy and Communications
Guido got thinking, given that Baldwin is constantly referred to as “the former Times journalist”, despite the fact he was on the way out anyway rather than being poached, perhaps there should be a redesignation of how he is described:
That should do it…