In lighter moments, Gordon Brown is alleged to imagine that he is John Major and David Cameron is Neil Kinnock. Now, I think the Tories will win outright, but would Cameron resign if Brown’s daydreams became reality? ‘No,’ Cameron tells the Mail on Sunday.
Despite the bravado, Cameron must fear a challenge hot on the heels of failure – emasculated backbenchers have threatened as much in private recently. By reputation, Tories romance in intrigue and excel at regicide; yet few credible usurpers exist. William Hague’s low campaign profile denotes spent ambition as much as it does proximity to Lord Ashcroft. Liam Fox is admirable but has never commanded sufficient support anywhere beyond his immediate coterie. Which leaves the impetuous David Davis, and the new Tory intake is reputed to be more in tune with Cameron than Davis. No doubt the self-regarding force that is Rory Stewart would ‘serve if so required to do’, but Cameron will survive election defeat: few Tories have that lean and hungry look.