Monday, January 23, 2006

Is This Man David Cameron's First LibDem Defector?

A friend of mine from Yeovil was at a business lunch over the weekend and David Laws defecting to the Tories was the talk of the lunch. And elsewhere, by all accounts. There's no doubt that if David Cameron is to display firm proof of his ability to attract talented people from outside the Party, Laws's defection would be totemic. I'm told he only joined the LibDems in the first place because he felt the Conservatives were too illiberal on sexual issues and had no belief in social justice. The first is transparently untrue nowadays and the whole social justice agenda is at the forefront of a Cameron-led Conservative Party. Come on David, jump. You know it makes sense! And remember, dear readers, you read it here first...

PS I am now preparing to put on my tin hat and prepare for the LibDem comments of "ridiculous", "typical Dale fantasy", "outrageous". Mind you, I did also predict Mark Oaten might be the first to jump. David Laws will be hoping I haven't set a precedent...

18 comments:

Anonymous said...

Let the man speak for himself:-

http://www.guardian.co.uk/comment/story/0,,1682174,00.html

dynamite said...

I'm not going to go off on one Iain, other than to say I think you're barking up the wrong tree. If he was seriously considering his position in the party, why would he be one of the most prominent advocates of Ming Campbell; the man who is shortly to become the party leader?

Patrick said...

I do hope Mr Laws joins us, in that photo he looks even more dashing than I thought he was.

Anonymous said...

Its probable that he will defect to the Tories before May - from what I know of his politics he's a Tory anyway, e.g. his Orange Book section on social insurance instead of the NHS. However, he'll be looking for a good deal since he is in Yeovil, which is Ashdown's old seat and pretty safe Lib Dem. I'd do a deal based more on the safeness of the seat than any Shadow Cabinet position.

Ed said...

Typical outrageous, ridiculous Dale fantasy, never going to happen :p.

Anonymous said...

I don't think so... if he were to change parties, I'm not totally convinced the Yeovil Tories would welcome him with open arms and there are plenty of other LibDems who would happily take over this constituency.

Moreover, Laws remains close to a lot of the party hierarchy - Paddy Ashdown inter alia - and, I think, has spent too much time building himself up as a LibDem in Yeovil.

Although you never know... after all 'Somerset born and Somerset bred, strong in the arm and thick in the head'

Antony Calvert said...

I wouldn't mind Laws coming over. He is one of the few Lib Dems that I actually rate. He is also very talented.

I hope the Iain Dale curse doesn't beset him as it did Oaten and we don't read about him eating ****

Anonymous said...

Well the problem with this is that in order for him to jump ship he'll have to be offered something and once you start that game it can all get messy very quickly.

Greg said...

A belief in Social insurance makes him a Tory?

I thought Cameron had rejected all that?

Anonymous said...

er, no. about as likely as Iain Dale getting elected (enjoy your drubbing in May last year??) and Iain's suggestion that the tories now have social justice at the forefront of policy? still waiting for those policy details...

Antony Calvert said...

anonymous... that's a bit harsh. At least he submitted himself for election, something which should be applauded!

Anonymous said...

Laws is not about to defect - he is a Liberal not just for the reasons listed. Where does Dale get this false 'insider' knowledge??

Iain Dale said...

Anonymous, If you read the headline, I asked a question.Your answer is no. Mine is, I don't know but from all accounts it's possible. People in his constituency certainly think so.

Anonymous said...

I am quite sure he is no Tory, I believe the man himself has dismissed the rumour with a resounding no.

Anonymous said...

Anthony - I am all for parliamentary democracy, and I do indeed applaud Mr. Dale for standing. And I look forward to him standing again in Norfolk North, where no doubt incumbent MP Norman Lamb, who would also never defect to the Tories, will no doubt score another resounding win.

Iain Dale said...

Anonymous, I am so sorry to disappoint you, but I announced some time ago that I would not re-contest the North Norfolk seat. Bet you're gutted.

Anonymous said...

I don't understand the logic of those expecting Laws to defect. All this years he has been one of the few economically liberal Lib Dems, supporting for instance private health care in his chapter of the Orange Book, and now, when Cameron has rejected economical liberalism and private health care, you expect him to defect to the Tories? I doubt, that Camerons new policies tempt him, but you could try social conservatives from the Left wing of the Lib Dems, such as Colin Breed, Steve Webb and John Pugh. They could find the new policies of the Tories appealing.

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