Dorries warns Cameron of possible leadership challenge

David Cameron at Conservative party conference 2012 Nadine Dorries believes that David Cameron could face a challenge to his leadership in 2015

It's very easy to dismiss Nadine Dorries as a maverick but her views are undeniably reflected more widely in the Conservative party by MPs who are more reserved over voicing them.

In April she dismissed the Prime Minister and Chancellor as being "two arrogant posh boys".

Last month she called for a "kill Cameron strategy", although she subsequently said she was speaking metaphorically, rather than pressing for a leadership change.

The tone may be shrill but the sentiments are shared, if comments we have heard are anything to go by.

Ms Dorries has her admirers among the party grass roots, who feel that she understands them.

She recently received a standing ovation after a speech in St Neots and you would ignore her at your peril.

So her analysis of where the Tory party is at - as it gathers for its annual conference in Birmingham - is at least worth considering.

"There is an atmosphere of despondency among the activists," she tells us.

Start Quote

We'll all be behind David Cameron if David Cameron looks like a winner in 2015”

End Quote Nadine Dorries MP

"They'd like to see us doing better in the polls and they'd like to see more Conservative policies coming through."

"I think we're at a tipping point as a party and I think after this conference things have to get better, and quickly, and we have to see big improvements in the polls and at the County Council elections next year."

"We'll all be behind David Cameron if David Cameron looks like a winner in 2015.

"If David Cameron looks as if he's going to lose the 2015 election I think a challenge to his leadership is a real threat indeed."

Lib Dem divorce?

She says activists feel that the Liberal Democrats have too much of an upper hand in the coalition.

"I think Nick Clegg crowing that (the party) are driving the government's agenda will stick in the craw of many Conservative activists.

"We need to say enough is enough - it's now time for Conservative policies to dominate."

Start Quote

Nadine Dorries MP

If David Cameron looks as if he's going to lose the 2015 election, I think a challenge to his leadership is a real threat ”

End Quote Nadine Dorries MP (Con) Mid Bedfordshire

In particular, she says the Prime Minister must talk more about tax cuts, promise a clear in/out referendum on Europe, and do more to improve infrastructure.

"We want to see him coming out with really strong policies which we'll recognise as Conservative policies."

The Conservative party of this parliament has become quite rebellious.

We believe that around half of MPs in the Eastern region have voted against the government or spoken out over the last year on issues as varied as House of Lords reform, wind farms or the coalition.

And in recent weeks David Ruffley (Bury St Edmunds) has complained about the Lib Dems wagging the Tory Dog.

Brian Binley (Northampton South) has accused the Prime Minister of being Nick Clegg's chambermaid while Peter Bone (Wellingborough) has said that, as in an unhappy marriage, there should be an early divorce with the Lib Dems.

Strong leadership

The Prime Minister told the Sunday Politics East this week that coalition can be frustrating at times but he believed it was right for the country.

"Without a coalition we wouldn't have a majority, we wouldn't get things done," he said.

"The vast majority of Conservatives know these are tough times and require difficult decisions and strong leadership."

It's strong leadership that party activists are looking for.

Deborah McGurran, Political editor, East of England Article written by Deborah McGurran Deborah McGurran Political editor, East of England

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  • rate this

    Comment number 12.

    Hell hath no fury......

  • rate this

    Comment number 11.

    Nadine Dorries is a self-seeking publicity freak who needs to examine her conscience and her true motives. Cameron is the Tories' best hope by miles, and she would do well to remember that and get behind him (minus the knife with which she would probably stab him!) Stop trying to hog the limelight Nadine and remember which side your bread is buttered!

  • rate this

    Comment number 10.

    I do hope so fo rthe sake of the UK.

    Now the BAE/EADS merger is off due to german nationalism with some french for good measure then the EU debate should start right now

  • rate this

    Comment number 9.

    Nadine either frequently forgets the fact that divisions within the Conservative Party caused the loss at the 1997 and subsequent General Elections or she is an agent of the Labour Party; at times I am genuinely unsure which is true. For the moment, however, with the European Elections on the horizon, how about digging up Katie Hopkins and placing her on Question Time alongside Nadine Dorries?

  • rate this

    Comment number 8.

    This is a banal and pedestrian assessment of Nadine Dorries. That she has delivered a couple of decent soundbites that resonate with people of all or no political parties (i.e. "two arrogant posh boys") doesn't alter the fact she is a fringe-extremist in her own party with an unashamed religious agenda. She'll fade into obscurity along with this government within the next decade.


Comments 5 of 12



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