Sunday, 28 December 2008

Ken Clarke set to kill Conservative hopes of election win.

The Telegraph are hinting that David Cameron may be ready to bring Ken Clarke back to the Tory front bench. I've said elsewhere that I would not renew my party membership if this happens. Also, blogging can be hard work when you are in full time employment and Ken Clarke on the front bench would give me another reason to pack it all in.

Why do I dislike Clarke so much? The answer is simple - the EU. The man is an out and out Europhile. I will never forgive him for standing up in the House of Commons to argue for the ratification of the Lisbon Treaty. Clarke's EU stance would split the party and kill any chance of a Tory victory in the next General Election. Every Wednesday at noon, Gordon Brown will stand up in the house and say "Tory Split" - and he will be right. No matter how great our policies may be on health, education, crime, social justice, the economy etc... we will never win a General Election against the Labour spin machine if we have a split party.

Besides the EU, Clarke shows that he is a dinosaur at odds with the modern party, to a greater extent, as each year passes. The following shows just how out of touch with the party he has become:

Ken Clarke's voting record:


1 May 1997 to 14 May 2001, 5 votes out of 543, 0.9%

7 Jun 2001 to 11 Apr 2005, 26 votes out of 610 4.3%

5 May 2005 to date, 44 votes out of 497, 8.9%

Do you see a pattern emerging?

In almost one in ten votes, he votes against the party. Split anyone?

Ken Clarke may attract some people into the Conservative camp, BUT his appointment to the front bench will see many more leave.


Duyfken said...

Well done, Steve, for making the point so clearly.

Despite the fine legacy he left as Chancellor, Clark's Europhilia should exclude him from Tory front bench office. To this, and as you have displayed, should be added his disloyal voting record.

I'm also less than impressed by his outside interests in the tobacco industry.

All in all, he would be a disaster and I would doubtless follow the voting intentions you have expressed.

William Gruff said...

Ken Clarke is very much a part of the guiding spirit of the 'modern' Conservative Party and one of its few genuinely free thinkers. He's also one of the very few MPs the loss of whom would leave the Commons the poorer. I was infuriated by his Lisbon speech but I believe that his views are not entirely shaped by the leadership nor his judgment entirely clouded by Europe.

Cameron is a committed Europhile so I cannot see that 'Europhilia' is sufficient cause for exclusion from the front bench.