John Harris

Journalist & Author

The Tories at war: troublemakers, egotists and backstabbers

Ukip defections, leadership manoeuvring and poll panics are eating away at the Tories. John Harris outlines the ructions in the ranks and breaks down the competing factions

Ten steps to the perfect Tory speech video

As with so many things, its ultimately Margaret Thatchers fault. Who else is there to blame for the state of the Tory Party gathered this week in Birmingham: fixated on the issue of Europe, edging into ideological zealotry and only ever a few steps away from turning on its leader? After all, this behaviour only really took root in Thatchers reign, and never really went away.

A handful of people are already jostling to be the next leader. Malcontents say they yearn for genuine Conservative policies, as if freezing all working-age benefits and privatising the NHS were nowhere near enough. Meanwhile, activists desert in their droves to Ukip, two MPs have now decided to follow suit and more may follow.

Key

T = Hardcore Tory traditionalist

M = Vague moderniser

PT = Prodigious tweeter

ES = Eurosceptic

E = Etonian

FOC = Friend of Cameron

FOB = Friend of Boris

FOG = Friend of George

DNAF = Doesnt need any friends

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