The commentators 29-09-14
...on the Conservative conference
I cannot understand Eurosceptic Tory defectors because there is only one prime minister in the current EU who is capable of collating that support and turning it into a new treaty, and only one man who is going to be able to give the people of this country the vote on the EU that we have been deprived of for the past 40 years, and that man is David Cameron.
- Boris Johnson, Daily Telegraph
The defection of Mark Reckless is a huge blow to the Conservative party as they start their annual conference in Birmingham. Desperate to win back frustrated voters Cameron told the BBC yesterday that he would put immigration “at the heart” of his EU renegotiation strategy. But it is a bit late for that.
- Leo McKinstrey, Daily Express
The Tory conference has got off to a dreadful start but David Cameron can withstand the loss of Mark Reckless, Douglas Carswell and the handful of other Tory MPs that may yet join Nigel Farage’s “Peoples’ Army”. What he cannot survive is if he gets the big-picture things wrong, the things that do get noticed on the Altrincham to Bury Metrolink service.
- Tim Montgomerie, The Times
Cameron is unlikely to persuade his party this week that Downing Street will no longer be run “like a branch of lastminute.com”, in the words of a Conservative back-bencher. What he can do, perhaps, is show that last week’s Chequers summit with Tory MPs on the constitution heralded a change – that his election campaign will be based on real, structured, formal teamwork with his Cabinet colleagues, ministers, MPs and party members.
- Paul Goodman, Daily Telegraph
The Tory conference has been torpedoed even before it began, and without the traditional assistance of the leader’s amnesia.
- Matthew Norman, The Independent
Labour’s conference was a failure. Miliband forgetting to deliver part of his speech was the only newsworthy moment. The Tory one this week could be worse, but Cameron performs best under pressure.
- Peter McKay, Daily Mail
Thursday 25 September Judges for the Editorial Intelligence comment awards announced their shortlists today, with ten nominations for the FT, nine for the Times, five for the Guardian, four for the Independent - and two for SubScribe.
The Times and Sunday Times scored a clean sweep in nominations for the main award of commentariat of the year, which will be decided between David Aaronovitch, Camilla Cavendish, Daniel Finkelstein and last year's winner Caitlin Moran.
Guardian's Jay Rayner was shortlisted in the food writer category, but said that he did not wish to be considered as that award is sponsored by Tesco.
The awards will be presented on November 25. See the full shortlists here
Apart from the twelve referendum splashes of the past two days, the subject has made a front-page lead on only five occasions this year:Yes, it's been busy with Iraq, Gaza, Ukraine, the rise of Ukip, sex scandals, the hacking trial, Mr Cameron's holidays, floods and heatwaves. But one would still expect the potential break-up of the UK - or the liberation of Scotland, depending on your point of view - to be able to put up a better fight against the 30 house price splashes, the 25 on migrants and the 26 on Madeleine McCann. I stopped counting when I got to 60 soap opera and "reality TV" offerings.
- Wake us up before they go-go
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