Peter Hoskin

Cameron’s failure to communicate?

Cameron's failure to communicate?
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Fascinating stuff.  ConHome's Tim Montgomerie has got his hands on a letter sent on House of Commons writing paper to all Tory MPs, by - allegedly - a group of Conservative parliamentarians.  Tim has uploaded a pdf of the entire thing but, as he says, this is the key section:

"We all know that the expenses crisis is a massive problem, but it has brought out clear evidence of what all of us had sensed and feared, namely that the party in parliament has ceased to be a team effort and is now just run and dictated to for the personal advantage of David Cameron and George Osborne. We are concerned that the parliamentary party is just being used and abused by the leader and his inner circle. They are treating the party as if it is their private property.

Action is being taken to respond to the expenses scandal but its main purpose actually seems to be to build up a position for themselves of permanent power. Colleagues are threatened with expulsion, older members are being forced out, untested candidates are being invited to apply from nowhere, and all of it is designed to assert a Stalinist hold over the party. The importance of parliament is being sacrificed to help them."

Now, you could say that is just a bunch of MPs trying to fight back - and hang on to their perks - in the wake of Cameron's response to the expenses scandal.  Or it could even be an elaborate fraud.  But it's still noteworthy to hear the word "Stalinist" used in connection with a party leader other than Brown.  And it chimes with rumblings you hear around Westminister, as well as noises made by sections of the shadow cabinet.  All in all, you feel that Cameron will eventually have to deal with this complaint, one way or another.