Oh dear. Not really the best of starts to the Henley Conservative campaign. First there was David Cameron having to tell the local party what to do regarding selections after the pleas of John Maples were rebuffed. Then the BBC reported how the local Conservative Party was split over their Henley selection.
And now: Conservative Shadow Business Secretary Alan Duncan has contradicted what the Conservatives are telling people locally.
You see, one of their local messages is, “Local Conservatives have called for Gordon Brown to perform another Budget U-turn, by ditching his planned road tax increases” (source: Henley Conservatives website), but this morning Alan Duncan told Sky TV something rather different:
Alan Duncan said the Tories would not be in a position to reverse the road tax because Mr Brown has left no money in the kitty. “We ought to be in a position where there is a lot of money in the kitty, but we are not.
“We are in a position where we have no power to alleviate the pain because there is nothing in the kitty. Gordon Brown has over spent and borrowed and he is highly culpable for that.
And indeed Conservative Home has headlined this story, “Alan Duncan says there’s no money in the kitty to reverse the road tax.”
Not a happy start to a campaign really having a senior MP going on TV and contradicting one of your key local campaign messages is it? (And imagine quite how some Conservative bloggers would react if the roles were reversed…)