Wednesday, 29 April 2009

Has Dave got Guido's message?

Does the call from Guido Fawkes for David Cameron to mention a Downing Street petition calling for the Prime Minister to go at PMQs today not make it more difficult for the leader of the opposition to do so?

Iain Dale adds his authoritative voice while stressing that he thinks Downing Street petitions are pointless.

But would Dave doing what the blogs want look responsive - or a bit cheap for the man who wants to be PM?

There still seem to be some problems in getting the thing to go viral. There was much talk about a million or two. Now the right-wing websites are spinning up 26,000 as highly impressive. The road charging numbers dwarfed this one. Hannan got several million - almost in the Susan Boyle class. And several million people voted Tory at the last election.

Anyway, this adds to my broader scepticismabout the claim of right-wing blogger Paul Staines (aka Guido Fawkes) that he is an equal opportunity political nihilist, who hates all politicians and would be just as tough on the political right.

Take this post headlined "Osborne wows" from November as an example of some positive enthusiasms creeping through into pro-politician cheerleading.

ConservativeHome calls it an “outstanding performance by George Osborne“, Guido has just got off the phone with Tom Clougherty, policy director at the free market think-tank the Adam Smith Institute, he described it as “the speech of his life”, Matthew Elliot at the Taxpayer’s Alliance has just crackberried over “he passed the test with flying colours. There is still a question mark over providing a coherent alternative plan, but this is slowly taking shape, and we’ll no doubt see more details in the coming weeks.” Even the insouciant worldly, non-partisan cynic Sir Michael White says he “did well enough from the sound of it“, which must mean that Darling was in difficulty.

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