Peter Hoskin

Why the “Tory toff” attack will struggle come election time

Why the "Tory toff" attack will struggle come election time
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The Whip column in today's Sun suggests that Labour may reheat the "Tory toffs" attack come election time:

"LABOUR’S 'below-the-belt' propaganda department is already planning its main attack for the General Election.

They aim to paint Tory leader David Cameron and Shadow Chancellor George (formerly Gideon) Osborne as rich toffs who haven’t a clue how ordinary voters live.

The campaign will make huge posters of those cringe-making student photos of the two men in Oxford University’s drunken, bar-trashing Bullingdon Club and ask: 'Do you want these men to run Britain?'

Trouble is that the famous snap with Dave in his ghastly white-lapelled dinner suit has been removed from public gaze on grounds of 'personal copyright'.

But a court case in the middle of the campaign would only double the impact, Labour sneaks tell The Whip."

To my mind, this attack is doomed to fail as it failed in Crewe and Nantwich.  Sure, the idea is that it will have more traction during a recession, when people are losing their jobs, homes and businesses.  But, after recent controversies, it could just as easily be said that certain Labour ministers "haven’t a clue how ordinary voters live".  The problem these crude, class-based attacks face is that voters are disillusioned with the whole political class; not, specfically, those fiendish Bullingdon boys.

UPDATE: Tom Harris has his say on the issue: "And by focussing on class, we would effectively be conceding that we don’t have anything to say about Tory policies."