Sunday, 4 October 2009

Tories set out their Manchester stall

Just setting up in the Manchester Centre for this week's Conservative conference. You do get a better class of exhibitor at a Tory conference. Crombie, Harvey Nicks and Marks and Sparks are all here selling their wares along with this pie stall, pictured above, which is sure to do roaring trade this week. Tomorrow, when they open, I'll ask if they accept Euros.

Despite Tory High Command trying to steer the debate on to welfare reform today the result of the Irish referendum on the Lisbon Treaty and the innate Conservative antipathy towards the EU just won't go away. Boris Johnson, ex-Bullington clubmate of David Cameron, wants a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty and so do three quarters of Tory members according to Conservative Home.

Just as Gordon Brown's leadership was the elephant in the room at Brighton, the Conservative relationship with the European Union could be the great unspoken on the platform at Birmingham. Plenty speakers on the fringe who'll upset the applecart.

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