If you're keen to catch sight of what the Conservative party might look like in a decade’s time, you should make your way to the Sonata room at the Hyatt Hotel in Birmingham at half past seven this evening. A fringe meeting there, organised by the Institute of Economic Affairs and the Free Enterprise Group of market-leaning Conservative MPs will spell out their radical ideas for the sort of policies which should be included in the 2015 manifesto.
Of course, the headlines of the conference are being driven by day-to-day issues of political management: are the rumblings against Cameron’s premiership registering at all on the Richter scale? Has the vital debate about airport capacity in the South East merely become a cypher for whether you would prefer Dave or Boris as Tory leader? Can Osborne’s negative poll ratings fall any further?
However, what is becoming increasingly clear is that the coalition’s dreary day-to-day approach – preaching the need for dramatic reductions in public spending, but not producing them – is failing to deliver us to the sunlit uplands we were originally promised. The UK economy remains stuck in the foothills.
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