The most personalised Tory campaign

At this election the name and image of the Tory party leader are everywhere-- on battlebuses, campaign literature, advertisements and so on. The Conservative party itself is being given much less prominence. Alistair Lexden commented on this unprecedented state of affairs in a letter published in The Daily Telegraph on 16 May.

SIR--Fraser Nelson (Comment, May 12) states that “it’s hard to remember the last time that a Tory election campaign was so personalised”.

None of Mrs May’s predecessors put leader before party as she is doing. Even Churchill did not go quite so far. At the 1951 election, which was to restore him to power, he sought a mandate for “a stable government with several years before it, during which time national interests must be faithfully held far above party feuds or tactics”. Its work would not be “biased by privilege”.

The manifesto appeared above his personal signature. But the candidates did not fight as “Winston’s team”. They campaigned for a Conservative and Unionist victory.

Lord Lexden
London SW1