Well the opinion polls that showed that Ken Clarke is four times more popular amongst the public than any other Conservative leadership contender seems to have ruffled a few feathers. Although it shouldn’t be even remotely surprising that Clarke is the most popular Tory in the country.
ICM’s poll suggests that a net 12% of voters would be more likely to vote for the Conservatives under Clarke. Meanwhile the darling of Conservative activists, David Davis, would lose the party 3% of votes.
Third Avenue says Clarke will never be leader because
…if there’s one thing the modern Conservative party hates with passion, it’s having a leader that any normal member of the public would actually vote for.
If we want to defeat the Dear Leader, we might have to think the unthinkable…
By which I presume he means elect Clarke as leader.
It shouldn’t be the unthinkable though. It’s about doing the bloody obvious. When it became clear to Labour that nobody would vote for a socialist party any more, they ditched Clause IV and they’ve looked unbeatable ever since.
Some Conservatives might say that the only reason Ken Clarke has such a massive lead is that he is the only one that the public have heard of at the moment (although maybe that in itself is something that the Conservatives should think about) and that Davis, or whoever becomes leader, will soon be well-known enough once he becomes leader. But that’s what they said about IDS.