As we talk, people are constantly buzzing in and out. At one point, he tells his own Miss Moneypenny: "Get me D1, D2, D3 briefings on reactions to a terrorist attack." To an aide, he shouts: "Call X - he'll be at MI5," then tells us: "You didn't hear that. I know lots of spooks." The first occasion we meet DD, as he is known by his team, is on the morning of the terrorist attacks on London, and information is coming in all the time. Mr Davis admits that he likes a crisis. "Big occasions bring out the best in me," he says. "Life is a test, a thing you throw yourself at."
Anyway, enough of that. In the first part of today's interview DD talks about how William Hague and he have been deputed to reassure the Right...
He then makes clear he thinks that then private equity sector is undertaxed...
The man who stood for the Right against Mr Cameron in the leadership contest now wants to keep the two sides together. "William Hague and I are the guarantors," he says. "If we think things are OK, most Tories will probably think they're OK, it is useful having William and I sitting either side of David." The Conservative leader's task until now has, Mr Davis says, been "decontamination, detox, all the phrases I hate. But he has to establish the right to be listened to. In doing that there are risks with your own base. You can be misunderstood, we are trying to explain the project to the grassroots."
Some activists, he admits, are grumpy. "You've inevitably got a group on the traditional Right of the party who are edgy. We all get green ink letters but if you meet the Tory party in the country you will find they're astoundingly normal. Frankly, they want to win. It doesn't matter that they're not trendy and they don't live in Notting Hill." He says the Conservative Party made its choice between two suitors during the leadership contest. "How much did Cameron beat me by? Let me remind you of that embarrassing fact: 66 to 32. If we had the poll tomorrow it would be the same. Of course there's nervousness. The honeymoon has switched to Brown and you can't have two simultaneous honeymoons, it doesn't work."The marriage,
he insists, is solid. Right-wing traditionalists "are a strand but they're a minority strand. I don't think they've been ignored too much ... David's got the formula that will win us the next election".
The social mobility tsar also has his eye on the super-rich. "The cliché is David Beckham. No one argues or grumbles about his salary, his value is very visible. But private equity is harder," he says. The "peculiar tax regime" - under which some private equity millionaires pay only 10 per cent tax - should, in his view, be reconsidered. He thinks the Tory grassroots would be in favour. "My hunch on the ground is that they would agree this is a tax break too far. They care about fairness ... You need a morally stable society which is why it is important to look at their worth and to sit up when some of their own people are saying this is not right."
Too many politicians are "goggled-eyed" about wealth, he says. "I am not a great enthusiast for cuddling up to the rich ...Labour used to be for the many not the few, and that is what the Tories now are."
And the interview concludes with some reflections which might surprise some people. And before anyone asks, the gay friend he refers to below isn't me!
He agrees that "general well-being" is as important as GDP. "The Right-wingers
who don't care about flexibility at work have got to recognise that we've got a
big unused resource if women are tied up and not able to meet their full
He is socially liberal. "People think I'm traditional but I gave away a gay friend at his civil partnership ceremony the other day. In a perfect world everybody would understand absolutely what I stand for."His environmentalism is old-fashioned. "I'm not into windmills but I live in a house sitting by a pond in 17 acres of ground with 1,000 trees and hares and partridge and pheasants. It's my bit of England. If you came there you'd see what I really think about green issues. I love the countryside but I don't need to talk about it."
Although he does not wear Converse trainers like the youthful Cameroons, he says: "I can run faster than any of them." He was going tieless when Dave was still at school. "I hate the heat." But, unlike his younger colleagues, he feels uncomfortable with touchy feely politics. "I'm much more private than most politicians. I think if you want to be a political leader now you have to be more willing to open yourself up."
Does he think the right man won the Tory leadership? "Yes," he replies without hesitating. As the Conservatives' "guarantor" he thinks he has the perfect job. "You can scare yourself to death - whether in business, politics or climbing mountains - by being over-reflective about what went wrong. If the rope stops you before you hit the ground you walk away and you have another go."