Do you think David Cameron should

  Quiller. 22:08 PM 08 May 13
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take Ed Milibands kind offer and work together to get legislation through parliament and by-pass the backbenchers.

eg

A number of other key policies disliked by groups of backbench Tories were missing from the Speech, including plain packaging for cigarettes, tighter internet surveillance, foreign aid targets, lobbying controls, the power to get rid of bad MPs and minimum alcohol pricing.

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Or should he come out fighting, which Keith Mitchell – a former leader of Oxfordshire County Council suggests to get back on track.

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  fourm member 07:16 AM 09 May 13

'Ed Milibands kind offer'

Let's start by saying there is nothing 'kind' about Miliband's offer. He's playing politics hoping to show the Tories as deeply divided. He's not doing it because he believes the policies are a good idea.

If he did think they were good policies, he had plenty of chances to enact them when Labour was in power.

There are three items that concern me though only two of them are on the Telegraph's list. Minimum unit pricing for alcohol would have an impact on the harm caused by this poison and, given Scotland's recent court success, there is no reason to hold back from presenting legislation.

Plain packaging would be a further step along the road to reducing the harm done by tobacco in a controlled way. It is ironic that the tobacco companies keep saying there is no evidence that the packaging affects buying decisions. If that were the case, they could save themselves a lot of lawyers' and lobbyists' fees and let the change go ahead.

The third item I'd like to have seen would be a commitment, either by the Royal Commission the Home Affairs Select Committee called for or by some other means, to review the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 to find a way to reduce the harm caused by that legislation. (And, as a bonus, make substantial cost savings.)

  morddwyd 08:41 AM 09 May 13

I said to my wife earlier this week that I don't know how he is still hanging on.

Then I thought about a replacement and came up with nothing (and I included Miliband!).

Yesterday's speech, what we saw of it among all the football news, did nothing to make me think his position is more secure.

  fourm member 08:51 AM 09 May 13

morddwyd

'came up with nothing'

That's the really worrying part. Ed Miliband's complete failure as a leader is adding to the problems.

A strong left would pull Cameron towards the centre. Because it is not there the only pull on him is to the right.

  Quickbeam 09:10 AM 09 May 13

That reads like the Conservatives are destined to forever be puppeted to one side or another but to never to be able to control their own direction FM.

  fourm member 09:21 AM 09 May 13

Quickbeam

'Never' is a big word and you have to believe that there is hope that, one day, all political parties will be led by people who have the vision and strength to pursue what they believe to be right.

  Quickbeam 09:25 AM 09 May 13

I hate to admit it, but the last one to have that kind of influence died recently...

  natdoor 09:39 AM 09 May 13

I wouldn't describe 1945 as recent.

  morddwyd 19:51 PM 09 May 13

"I wouldn't describe 1945 as recent."

Are you thinking of Hitler or Truman, who both died that year?

I wouldn't describe either as "people who have the vision and strength to pursue what they believe to be right".

  natdoor 21:01 PM 09 May 13

morddwyd

I was, of course, thinking of Hitler. People who have the vision and strength to pursue what THEY believe to be right are usually tyrants. Any worthwhile leader will have the support of most enlightened people.

  morddwyd 07:55 AM 10 May 13

Any worthwhile leader will have the support of most enlightened people."

I think we'll have to disagree here. Any worthwhile leader will have the strength to take unpopular but necessary measures.

I believe in the Michael Winner brand of leadership "Teamwork is a bunch of people doing what I tell them to"!

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