Cameron slaps down David Davis's Downton Abbey putsch

Servants will not be taking charge of the Conservative Party despite resentment at 'Lord Snooty and his pals'

Column LAST UPDATED AT 12:37 ON Mon 2 Apr 2012

ECKY THUMP! David Cameron's allies have told The Daily Telegraph today that the Toffs will remain in charge of the Conservatives despite an attempt at a palace coup by man of the people David Davis, which has been sparked by a slump in the party's polling figures.

Meanwhile (Eee by gum!) Labour leader Ed Miliband will today launch his party's local election campaign in Birmingham by making the charge that 'Lord Snooty and his pals' are out of touch with the lives of ordinary voters.

The Tories face a drubbing in the May 3 elections for around 5,000 seats in England's town halls unless something is done to lift Cameron's polling figures, which have slumped since the row over the tax on pasties last week and Cabinet buffoon Francis Maude's gaffe advising motorists to use "a jerry can" to store petrol in the garage to avoid running out in the event of a tanker drivers' strike.

David Davis, who was brought up in London's East End, is leading the calls among Conservatives for the promotion of Tories with roots in the working classes, such as housing minister Grant Shapps, former firefighter and Essex man Mike Penning and Communities Secretary Eric Pickles, whose vowels are as flat as a Yorkshire pigeon fancier's cap.

William Hague, a Rotherham boy who also sounds like he has a ferret in his trouser pockets, is away too often as Foreign Secretary to help Cameron at home.

Davis warned that working-class voters increasingly "resent" what they see as Old Etonian, privileged Cabinet ministers who do not understand their everyday lives. The revolt sounds like an episode of Downton Abbey in which the servants take control of the house.

The 1922 Executive Committee - the shop stewards of the Tory backbench - took their concerns to Cameron last week. In addition to more working class voices, they want to see George Osborne, the Chancellor, stripped of his dual role in charge of Tory election strategy, and an end to the job split in the chairmanship of the party between Lord Feldman, a pal of Cameron, and northerner Baroness Warsi.

But Cameron left them in no doubt that Lord Grantham is staying firmly in charge of Downton Abbey - or Downturn Shabby, as today's Independent cartoonist has it. The 1922 Committee was told there would be "no big change". The Daily Telegraph quotes one source who says: "We have got the right policies and we're going to get on with delivering them."

Iain Martin, a Tory pundit with the grassroots website ConservativeHome, has started to contemplate life after Cameron, blogging in The Daily Telegraph that what is needed is "a new Thatcher" - a sentiment that led one Labour MP to remark to the Mole: "It sounds like the Tories are not just reaching for the comfort blanket. They are hiding their heads under it." · 

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The idea that George Osborne is some kind of political genius--the Karl Rove of the Tory party--is a strange one.

This mastermind failed to win a Tory majority in 2010--after 13 years of Labour rule, two unpopular wars, an economic meltdown, and Gordon Brown as PM.

Perhaps this myth is based on nothing more than Osborne's inheritance tax stunt, which stopped Brown from calling an early election that he might well have won. Afterwards--too late for Brown--voters realised that it's only people like Osborne who have to fret about inheritance tax. In the current climate, it's probably not a vote-winner.

How long before David Davis starts having cosy chats with Rupert Murdoch and Paul Dacre? Perhaps they've already begun...

...of course there are none so blind as those who will not see and none so deaf as those will not listen - both are apt descriptions of Cameron.

From his appalling arrogance over his refusal to heed the advice of senior defence staff re our recent "intervention" in Libya ("you do the fighting, I will do the thinking" sic) to this latest display of obduracy in the face of perfectly reasonable disquiet from his back benchers Cameron displays near fatal political blindness and deafness to reality.

For too long we have been fed the line that he cannot be as radical as he would wish to be because of the drag on his ambitions by the Lib Dems; the truth is starting to emerge that he is surrounded by naive and incompetent ministers and "advisors" - the trouble is that he seems either unwilling to do anything about this parlous state of affairs or incapable of recognising and accepting that there is a problem.   He will be fortunate to complete just ONE term in office!

England deserves better than these LibLabCon clowns.
They give everything to Scotland,Wales and N.Ireland and expect us to pick up the bill !
Give them the heave-ho in the May elections.
I like the English Democrats or UKIP.