A remarkable, if possibly slightly tongue-in-cheek bid has been made by London Mayor and Conservative leadership hopeful Boris Johnson to bring Guardian reading, Blairite Labour supporters into the Conservative fold tomorrow.
Speaking to The Guardian while on the campaign trail, Johnson said: “We are a compassionate one-nation Conservative Party that cares about everybody in our country and I am genuinely more anxious than I have been before about what a Labour party that has gone right to the left in conjunction with the Scottish nationalists will do.
If you are a moderate, sensible, one-nation, middle-of-the-road Blairite Guardian reader, please, please come out and vote for us”.
The appeal may confirm the fears of many former Tory-voting-UKIP supporters that the present Conservative party is now indistinguishable from New Labour of the Blair years, and has been irrevocably lost to the centre-ground of British politics.
A number of newspapers have come out in favour of the Conservative party in the past couple of days, most remarkably including the Independent newspaper, which has long stood by it’s left-wing principles. In an editorial this week, the paper argued the Conservative – Liberal Democrat coalition had served the best interests of the country and no other party was in a position to better them.
This plea to Guardian readers is not the first time Boris Johnson has grabbed headlines with unusual proclamations during an election campaign. In 2005 he promised “Voting Tory will cause your wife to have bigger breasts and increase your chances of owning a BMW M3”, a claim he later insisted the government had delivered on.