Three backbench Tories and two Cabinet ministers believe David Cameron’s government is under concerted attack from a number of loosely affiliated Right wing groups among the Conservative Party’s MPs, donors, and grassroots workers.
The sources (who did not collude) cite a number of recent enigmatic events, inexplicable leaks, media owner machinations, and resignations as clear evidence of the internal campaign to destabilise the Coalition and isolate the Prime Minister. Specifics quoted include Plebgate, and the decision to resign by two Conservative peers over the last two days. Named ‘arsonists’ include Lord Ashcroft, Boris Johnson, the Barclay Brothers, Jeremy Hunt, and those with close links to Newscorp.
The short-term objective is to break up the Coalition by any and all means possible, watch Cameron flounder, and then force his hand to move the tiller towards a more anti-EU, pro-business programme going into the next election.
“The calculation is that LibDem loyalists will desert to Labour, Boris [Johnson] fights a seat, a tough campaign sticks the boot into Miliband’s obvious lack of ideas, Clegg’s MPs are decimated, and we wind up with a clear majority,” said one of those contacted, adding “I don’t know whether they have the clout or the stomach for this, but I do not doubt that they wish to bring it about.”
A senior UKipper agrees that the Right Move tendency is a genuine (if loosely coordinated) force within the Tory Party. “Within UKip there’s a group who see a reconfigured Tory line-up making a pact with us to stuff the liberal Left,” he told me, “There’s some heavy-hitters in there. There’s a lot of common ground. They do talk to us. Cameron seems to me to be surrounded and close to being a prisoner in his own Party.”
Meanwhile, yesterday there were 180 promised new statutes, today the Barclays are putting the spotlight on 70 previous Camerlot promises that haven’t been enacted yet, as such. Failure to deliver on 70 promises is spun by Cleggerons in 2013 as being ‘overdue’ on the pledges, as opposed to no intention whatsoever of fulfilling them and over-my-dead-body chum. I tried to work out later last night what percentage of the original plan the Saggy Seventy represented, but I gave up and fell asleep instead. UK politics has this effect on me more and more these days.