To The Economist - though written in 2001, this letter has eery echoes, as Kenneth Clarke again seeks the Conservative leadership
01 September 2001
Bagehot has allowed his enthusiasm for European integration to get in the way of his normally excellent analysis. To equate Kenneth Clarke's enthusiasm for the Euro with a move "back to the centre" flies in the face of the evidence. If the term "centre" means anything at all it must refer to the median position within the electorate. The Euro is supported by fewer than one fifth in most polls and 60% are strongly hostile. Such a position is not the centre but the outer fringe.
The Conservative Party certainly needs to change, but to drop its one popular policy would most certainly be a move towards insularity and oblivion.
Copyright © Quentin Langley 01 September 2001