Are the Tories playing the expectations game?

by Stephen Tall on October 14, 2008

There’s been a fair amount of publicity today generated by ConservativeHome’s ‘scoop’, a briefing they’ve been fed received on the party’s analysis of the political impact of the current economic crisis, and in particular:

Team Cameron readily concede that Brown has enjoyed a good few days. They expect the Conservatives’ poll lead to drop into single figures in the next month or so. They expect to lose the Conservative lead on economic competence but expect it to be restored by the new year.

Now, forgive me for lapsing into cynicism, but this strikes me as a rather easy way for the Tory party to manage expectations, to avoid the media changing its recent anti-Brown narrative into a bout of Cameron-bashing. ‘So what?’ Tory central office will say if/when the polls show the Tory lead over Labour slashed; we predicted this; it’s all part of the plan.

To be fair, there is nothing intrinsically wrong in the Tories’ analysis of the situation. They correctly point out, according to ConHome, “that frenetic activity by Vince Cable is doing nothing to reverse the LibDems’ slide in the polls.” Which is a point Lib Dem Voice has also made.

But I don’t entirely buy into the Tories’ excuse for why Messrs Cameron and Osborne have gone ‘missing in action’ over the past week – “They have decided it’s largely impossible to compete for serious airtime with Government at this time.” Well, perhaps. Or it might be that they (unlike the Lib Dems) did not foresee the crisis, have nothing at all original to say, and are waiting to see how the wind blows before deciding how they next attack the Labour Government.

However the Tory party and ConHome likes to spin it, the last week has shown the new Tory party and its leadership to be utterly out of its depth in a crisis.

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Probably a bit of both to be fair…i think they realise that their charge is halted for at least the moment and are trying to stop jitters creeping in amoung the rank and file…however, since they are the main opposition party they can to some degree enjoy the luxury of spectating events and still reap the reward…

by Darrell on October 14, 2008 at 7:00 pm. Reply #

I refuse to believe that the Conservative Party is writing its strategy in shorthand on scraps of notepaper. Clearly this is something to shut the loons up.

by Anonymous on October 15, 2008 at 8:36 am. Reply #

It is all very well looking at the polls but we have scored some pretty big hits against the Tories in some council by-elections in the last few weeks so I am not sure the evidence from actual elections is a bad as some on Lib Dem Voice think the polls are.

by Simon on October 15, 2008 at 11:08 am. Reply #

How do you expalain the fact that Vince Cable has hardly been off our TV screens, and yet the Lib Dems are going backwards in the polls?

by broncodelsey on October 15, 2008 at 6:42 pm. Reply #

Listin I’m a Tory and I’m proud of it. I know you think we’re all Blue skys, no substance and we have a PR for a leader but don’t.

When I tell this to Labour supporters they never get the message but I think you Lib Dems are more intelligent. We have polocies that work and will lead Britain in the future.

Why am I telling you this? Because your party is going nowhere (no offence). I think that if you want a party as much for the people as the one your in now. Then you should join the Conservatives or just take a look at our website.

Remember your stuck near 15% in the polls… So come join us and battle the government that will do anything to stay in power.

At your party confrence your leader said nothing seriously against any of our individual policies. Did he?

by Matthew on October 18, 2008 at 8:02 pm. Reply #


by Matthew on October 18, 2008 at 8:03 pm. Reply #

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