Cameron “echoes” Tony Blair in Reading

Left Foot Forward contributer, Mark Thompson, has a fascinating account of a Cameron Direct event in Reading yesterday evening on his Mark Reckons blog. Thompson describes Cameron as “a very impressive individual in the flesh” and that there were “very strong echoes of Tony Blair.” But he goes on to caution that:

“Cameron then spent most of his answer explaining what he was not able to do or promise rather than on what he was going to be able to do. I am not convinced that is a winning pitch and Cameron seemed to suggest as much himself with a little self-deprecating jibe at the end where he quipped that he probably hadn’t convinced him.”

Mark Thompson has written frequently for Left Foot Forward on drugs policy. He asked Cameron the first question last night:

“I asked him about drugs policy and in particular I wanted to know why he had changed his position from one of supporting liberalisation of drugs laws before he was party leader and was a member of the House Affairs Select Committee to being in favour of the status quo now.

“The way he responded to my question, I felt was representative of the way he answered quite a few of the questions during the evening in that he rather deftly and subtly shifted how he talked about what I had asked in a way that avoided directly answering the question. He first said about how the report that he had signed up to when a member of the committee was a great report but that the call for the UN to relax its legal approach (which I referred to in my question) was not a part of it that he thought was particularly useful. He instead suggested that the important thing to do is to focus on treatment and improving people’s access to that treatment rather than on banging people up but he refused to countenance any change in the legal status of any illegal drug because of the message that that might send out.”

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