During the week I blogged about how it looked like the Conservatives would be throwing their national kitchen sink at only around 10 Liberal Democrat held constituencies.
That compares to 38 seats won by the Lib Dems in 2010 in which the Conservatives finished second, and would mean quite a few Liberal Democrats MPs not facing an all-out nationally-backed challenge in their seat – undoubtedly good news for the party.
Now ConservativeHome and the Birmingham Post have more on quite what the Conservatives will be doing:
At the heart of the 40/40 campaign is an ambition to hold forty seats and win another forty. This will be enough to win a majority but not a large one. Conservative sources are keen to point out, however, that winning forty seats is not necessarily the limit of their ambition. Resources will be devoted to these target seats and the effects will be monitored. If Con HQ feels that these seats are safely heading into the blue column extra target seats will be added. My source told me that the number of target seats should increase to about seventy before the general election. The original plan had more ambitiously been to immediately target fifty seats (36 from Labour and 14 from the LibDems and when there was only due to be 600 seats in total) and hold another fifty.
Note too what sort of campaigning tactics the Ashcroft-funded research has concluded is worth investing in:
Eighty new campaign managers are being recruited… The party will be building additional infrastructure for leaflet delivery.
UPDATE: Things didn’t quite turn out like that…