Peter Hoskin

The Tories take on Brown over the Lisbon Treaty

The Tories take on Brown over the Lisbon Treaty
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Let's get the bad stuff out of the way first.  To my eyes, the poster accompanying the Tories' new EU Referendum campaign isn't especially powerful.  It lacks the directness and iconic simplicity of that great "Gordon Brown's debt" poster, and I doubt it will, by itself, capture the imagination of people who aren't keyed into the whole Lisbon Treaty backstory.  

But the campaign itself is good, effective politics.  By highlighting the injustice that Brown committed over Lisbon, the Tories put him on the backfoot during the campaign for the European elections and, in turn, limit the Government's capacity to make merry over "Tory splits," as they've been desperate to do since the return of Ken Clarke to frontbench politics. 

Crucially, it also reinforces a leitmotif of the Tory response to the Budget and the 50p tax rate - namely, that Brown can't be trusted to keep his manifesto promises.  Should be a winner for them.