Question: what do the Taleban, Serb war criminals, al-Qa’eda, Rwandan genocidaires, the Ku Klux Klan, the Kach movement, the Japanese Red Army and the Janjaweed of Darfur have in common? Answer: two things actually. The obvious one, plus the fact that — like the Spectator columnist Mark Steyn — they all passionately abhor the United Nations, see it as an obstacle to their particular agenda and call for its abolition.
David Davis is the first prospective Tory leader to have been born in a council house to an unmarried mother. The bookies’ favourite to take over from Michael Howard, Davis, 56, is said by his supporters to have garnered the necessary qualities on his way to the top: determination, spirit, tenacity, a sense of social justice and an understanding of ‘the man and woman on the street’. His detractors claim the shadow home secretary is arrogant, treacherous, lazy and unable to get on with those from more privileged backgrounds, such as the members of the ‘Notting Hill Set’, to which his leadership rival David Cameron belongs.
YouGov’s Stephan Shakespeare on how the public would view the four candidates — if they were all better knownUp to now, polls on the Conservative leadership have been flawed in a fundamental way: they have tried to gauge public reaction to a group of candidates, when one of them is much better known than the rest. But this contest is about the future — about how they might be regarded after they become leader, when the public gets to know them better.
The annual party conference has been the occasion of the destruction of a Conservative leader, Iain Duncan Smith, within very recent history. But more than 40 years have passed since a leader was last created at a conference. That was back in 1963, also in Blackpool. Representatives had already gathered when news came through that the prime minister, Harold Macmillan, was severely ill and had determined to stand down.