Fraser Nelson

Is Cameron cowering in the face of Labour attacks?

Is Cameron cowering in the face of Labour attacks?
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Say what you like about the Cameron project, but at least they are strongly committed to marriage. Aren’t they? Well, it seems, not now. I always suspected that the wonderful strength of Cameron’s rhetoric on marriage was not really matched by his policy – a rather paltry tax break. Now, it seems not even that is certain. "It's something within a parliament I would definitely hope to do," he said today. “We're not able to give people absolute certainty on everything.”

Well not on everything – but what about on the few hard pledges that have actually been made? Or is Cameron really cowering in the face of Labour attacks that they would propose tax cuts for “the few” - a category which includes married couples? "We haven’t actually made many promises about tax for that reason – there just isn’t any money. This country is in a very difficult situation," he said. You’ll note, he doesn’t say ‘there isn't any money’ when he’s promising to protect the squanderous NHS budget or install a high-speed rail link. Politics is about priorities. I do hope that it’s merely a gaffe. But either way, until 3pm the Tories were winning the first day of the 'long election campaign.' The press weren't buying Darling's dossier and the Tories' rapid rebuttal was proving effective. Then, Cameron screwed up – in the process of running from a Labour attack. Moments like this will make Brown wonder if the Tories are simply not battle-ready – and that he might pull something out of the fire after all...