Monday, May 16, 2005

The Leader We Need

Eu-Serf writes:

As Conservatives consider who should lead them forward, before making a choice it is essential to think about the qualities we need from a leader.

Think of the leaders that have come and gone, their strengths and weakness and we can come to a number of conclusions.

Michael Howard is a true professional, who showed repeatedly that he had the same appetite for politics even when the party was at its lowest. Whilst many preferred TV careers or an easy life, he continued to fight for the party. Unfortunately the taint of theMajor government and his lack of likeability made his job very difficult.

IDS was sound on matters of principle and had the backing of the party activists. He was also not embarrassed to be a conservative, probably the most important failing of many Tory MPs. Unfortunately he lacked both leadership ability and charisma.

William Hague was a tragedy of a good man thrown into the fire too soon. A good parliamentarian, able to think as well as speak, he could have been a success.Now his brand is tainted. The public were not ready to accept any alternative to their newly crowned prince, let alone one of such limited experience.

John Major was a man whom the public liked a great deal. We tend to forget that the public liked his ordinariness and trusted him. The ERM created the disaster he became. His situation was made worse by his choice of battles. Becoming a hard man overMaastricht was a mistake both of strategy and principle.

Finally the Iron Lady, the most successful PrimeMinister we have ever had. She was a polariser, the public were either for or against her and many who voted for her did not much like her. They most certainly respected her though. Her greatest advantage was her transparency and belief. Everyone knew what she stood for and what she wanted to achieve. She was a world away from today's smoke and mirrors.You cannot imagine Mrs Thatcher worrying too much what focus groups were saying. She knew that leaders had to lead from the front. In doing so she inspired fierce loyalty amongst her followers.

So we need a leader that has strong beliefs and is not embarrassed to be a Conservative. Someone who can appeal to the three constituencies that matter, the MPs, The Party and The Electorate. The leader needs credibility that only experience can give, to throw away another promising career, whilst wasting another election would be irresponsible. The public is tired of leaders with whom they have nothing in common.Someone who has succeeded from a humble background is far more likely to connect with the electorate.

Whilst it is too early to know the names of all who will be putting themselves forward, it seems to me that the man who fits this description best is David Davis.

Posted by EU-Serf.


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