James Forsyth

Cameron’s theory of change

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At Tory conference last year, I asked a senior Tory adviser where the party would deliver substantive change and he replied 'where we take on the vested interests.' This analysis is correct. You can't change things if you aren't prepared to take on the status quo. So, it is encouraging to hear David Cameron defining himself today as a man who will take on the vested interests wherever they may be.

Part of the reason for the Tory wobble at the start of the year was, to my mind, their desire to be seen as the government in waiting. This was the wrong approach because what the country needs is not a managerial government but one prepared to shake things up radically, something that many of those in the new establishment are going to oppose. This is also going to involve upsetting some traditionally Tory constituencies. The Tory party should, and this is a crucial distinction, be pro-market not pro-business.

Many people will point out how, as Sunder has, that Cameron's language today echoes what Clegg told The Spectator about the banks. But to be fair, much of the opposition to George Osborne in the City stems from the fact that Osborne is not prepared to offer a return to the status quo ante and is open to the idea of breaking up the banks.

Written byJames Forsyth

James Forsyth is Political Editor of the Spectator. He is also a columnist in The Sun.

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