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The despatch box

We're you thinking what the Conservatives were thinking? Did you believe the Lib Dems were the real alternative? Is Labour moving forward not back? This blog will focus on all things political. It will be irritating, agitating and maybe just maybe it will get you thinking.

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

From the horses mouth


Mesasge from Ken outlining why he wants to lead the party.

Dear Colleague,

Today I have announced that I am a candidate for the leadership of the Conservative Party. I wanted to tell you personally why I believe I am the candidate best placed to lead our Party and, after the next election, our country.

Unless we broaden our Party’s appeal, we will never win power again. I believe that I have the popular appeal and experience to bring swing voters to our Party.

It is likely that Gordon Brown will be Prime Minister by the next election. I have faced Mr Brown across the despatch box before and I would be delighted to do so again. I am confident that I have the experience in Government and Parliament to challenge Mr Brown’s economic record and his policy agenda for the future.

But we need to do more than challenge the Labour Government. We need to set out our policy agenda for the Britain of today and tomorrow. We have to respond to the issues and problems that face people now – creating a strong economy, fighting terrorism, tackling the pensions crisis and providing good schools and hospitals.

Our Party needs more than a new policy agenda to revive our electoral fortunes. We have to change as a Party too. That means building on our recent successes in local government. It also requires that we build a Party representative of all sections of British society. We must again be a truly national Party, with stronger representation in Scotland, Wales and the cities of England.

I know that many of you have been concerned about my views on Europe. The euro is clearly off the agenda for a decade or more and the European Constitution is dead. It is time to put the battles over Europe behind us.

I believe that we can win power again but we shall only do so if we really want to win. I want to lead a united team that works together to bring victory to our Party at the next election. I hope you will be part of that team.

Yours sincerely,

Ken Clarke

PS: You can follow my campaign on the website I have launched today, http://www.kenclarke.co.uk

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