Peter Hoskin

The Tories’ final onslaught

The Tories' final onslaught
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"Where's the popcorn?" I thought, as I joined a bunch of journos to watch the Tories' final broadcast of the election campaign. It was a good nine minutes long, and might as well have been titled The Downfall of New Labour. The opening shots were of Blair and Brown in 97: "a new dawn," and all that. But Blair's image soon faded to black-and-white, and we were bombarded with a montage of headlines, quotes and images which highlighted the failures of the Labour years. 10p tax. Falling education standards. MRSA. The misdemeanours of Peter Mandelson. Defence spending. Purnell's resignation. Gillian Duffy. Even Manish Sood's comments today. Depending on your disposition, it was all gorily nostalgic stuff. Negative, yes. But quite powerful nonetheless.

Speaking afterwards, and in response to questions, Jeremy Hunt was keen to emphasise two things: that a (tactical) vote for the Lib Dems could mean five more years of this, and that the Tories also have a positive message. The latter point is undeniable – as demonstrated by Cameron's contract with voters this week. But it's striking that the party has chosen to round out its campaign with an all-out assault on Brown and his compatriots. Deep down, you suspect, they always knew he was their biggest asset.

We'll post the video for CoffeeHousers as soon as it's available.