Cameron: Don’t worry – I’m still a Tory

By Ian Dunt

David Cameron has reaffirmed his Conservative beliefs in a remarkable newspaper article which reveals concerns in the Tory leadership of a rebellion from Tory voters.

Writing in the Daily Mail, Mr Cameron said: “I know the last couple of weeks have been unsettling. You’ve seen politicians negotiating, you’re questioning whether you’ve got what you voted for, the political sands are shifting.

“But here are the things that have not changed – and will not change. My Conservative beliefs will not change.”

Mr Cameron barely survived a vote by backbenchers on the 1922 committee yesterday after he reformed the group to allow influence from ministers. The level of rebellion against him, 168 votes to 118, was very high indeed for a newly installed prime minister.

The Tory high command is increasingly concerned that Tory backbenchers and voters will be increasingly alienated by the politics of the coalition government which tends to highlight policy areas where the two party’s are on the same page and skip over areas where there is disagreement.

“Yes, you have a coalition government but you still have a Conservative prime minister,” Mr Cameron insisted in the article.

“Of course people will be disappointed that some policies have had to be discarded. I’m not going to pretend that having two parties in one government is going to be easy.

“But whatever happens along the way, you can be assured that you have a Conservative prime minister who will act in the national interest. And putting your country first is about the most important Conservative value there is.”

Mr Cameron is in Berlin today, where he will stress the importance of the euro currency despite insisting that Britain was right not to join.