Posts Tagged ‘John McTernan’

Val 2015 | Varför har teamet kring premiärminister David Cameron inte gått mer på offensiven och attackerat Ed Miliband mer intensivt?


Speciellt när det väger så jämt mellan Conservative Party och Labour borde de konservativa tjäna på att urholka väljarnas förtroende för labourledaren.

Det finns antagligen fem anledningar till att premiärministerns stab är så försiktiga.

1) Under Camerons ledarskap har partiet försökt tvätta bort stämpeln som ”the nasty party”. Man vill inte nu riskera att väcka den björn som sover.

2) Förtroendesiffrorna för Ed Miliband är så svaga att de konservativa inte vill riskera stöta sig med väljarna när Labour nu – thank you very much – gör grovjobbet åt Cameron.

Många inom Labour har gett upp tanken på Miliband som en tillgång för partiet. Istället hoppas man att missnöjet med regeringen i slutendan ändå skall vara större än missnöjet med partiledaren.

3) Varför skulle de konservativa attackera labourledaren när opinionsundersökningarna redan visar att Miliband är en belastning för Labour?

Då är det bättre för Cameron att försöka behålla, och utöka, väljarnas förtroende för premiärministern på områdena ”ledarskap” och förmågan att ”hantera ekonomin” – de två områden där Cameron ständigt rankas högre än Miliband i opinionsmätningar.

4) Eftersom Labour som parti oftast får högre siffror i opinionsmätningarna, om än knappt, måste de konservativa inrikta sig på att få ner dessa siffror istället.

Detta speciellt som Conservative Party inte lyckats få upp de egna siffrorna tillräckligt mycket. En ledarskribent har kallat nästa års val för ”the war of the weak”.

5) Ed Miliband har själv försökt ta udden av sitt imageproblem. Genom att vägra spela de konservativas spel har man (till viss del) vridet vapnet ur deras händer.

Två anhängare till Labour hade en intressant diskussion om problemen i oktobernumret av Total Politics.

De två som diskuterade var Dan Hodges, har tidigare arbetat för Labour och fackföreningen GMB och nu är krönikör i Total Politics, samt John McTernan som tidigare var rådgivare och politiska sekreterare till Tony Blair.

DH: This is the interesting thing. The Tories themselves are still not sure how to deal with Miliband.

JM: They thought he’d be gone by now and he’s not.

DH: I think his great success as a leader – if you want to make it a success – is that he has put the Labour Party at ease with itself. The problem is he’s done that by not challenging the party. He’s been pushing a message: we can win by being true to ourselves, we can win from the left, and we don’t have to make the compromises that Blair did. People make the mistake of saying Labour has been unified. It just hasn’t been challenged. That’s why he’s still in place.

JM: The thing is, I think Miliband was right to make the speech he made in July, where he specifically took on the issue about public perceptions of him. It was brave, necessary, and an inoculation against the types of attack the Tories are going to make. But I do agree with Dan that if you make an attack that has no resonance then the public not only has no idea what it was about but also thinks it won’t listen to the next attack. On the NHS, for example, I will certainly shoot myself if I don’t shoot somebody in the Labour Party if they keep going on about “top-down reorganisation of the NHS”. I don’t know a single voter in the country who was thinking about voting Tory but then realised Cameron broke a solemn pledge about not leading a top-down reorganisation of the NHS. The NHS is about quality and outcomes. Cameron made one promise: to cut the deficit and not the NHS. Well, he’s not cut the deficit and he has cut the NHS. That’s what you got for him. This nonsense about campaigning against the privatisation of the NHS – it’s a diversion. It plays to Labour’s safe place. Some of the Labour attacks on Cameron have no purchase. He’s a leader, he looks like a leader, and he has that authority. Now, authority is very often the flipside of arrogance. And he’s an arrogant man, that’s the weakness. That’s the point. It’s all about him. It’s all about staying in power.

DH: On the Tory attacks on Miliband, the Tories haven’t been going for him. And I’m not 100% sure they are going to. One of the things Labour has done effectively is to re-embed the idea of the old toxic brand, which means the Tories are too scared to go for Miliband. It’s amazing how many Labour advisers have said, “Jesus, they will take our heads off on X, Y and Z”. But then it hasn’t happened. Miliband has demonstrated just enough that if the Tories don’t target him, he may become a strength. He’s a very weak link for the Labour Party but he’s not such a weak link that the party’s campaign will just fracture if the Tories don’t touch him.

JM: Dan’s really hit something when he says that the Tory Party hasn’t dealt with the legacy of Theresa May calling them what they are, the Nasty Party. They’ve got unfinished modernisation issues. Sometimes when you lose advisers you really lose a part of yourself. Blair had a strength: he replaced people and could rebuild his team. Steve Hilton left, and that role has never been filled, the one who keeps going to the PM and saying, “Stick to the centre”. And one of the things they are standing off from is negative politics. If you’re driven by polling you’d think, “I’d never go negative”, but if you sit in the focus groups you hear people saying, “I hate negative politics… but it always changes my vote”. So you have to have the brass neck to do three seconds positive then 10 hours of negative. You have to go positive to get permission to go negative. Back to the Obama campaign: they made a judgment of just going for Romney. They took a gamble. They framed early, they kept that space and they stuck there. There’s a strategic hesitation at the heart of the Tory Party.

DH: You’re absolutely right about the Obama campaign. They decided to bomb Romney on the runway. The problem for Labour is, that has happened to Miliband. The Tories didn’t bomb him on the runway. He bombed himself. He didn’t even get into the cockpit. He didn’t define himself early in his leadership. Whatever you say about Cameron, the polls are clear – he consistently outpolls the Tory Party. He’s their biggest asset. People have bought what Cameron is saying. Miliband is Romney in this scenario. You’ve got a leader less than a year before an election effectively relaunching himself. That speaks volumes. Miliband is still sitting on the runway.

Bild: Från soniceclectic.com.

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