Tara Hamilton-Miller: Tory 'spin' pledge may be bad news

Having held back for fear of looking like the class bully, David Cameron finally went for it this week at the University of East London.

Tara Hamilton-Miller
Tara Hamilton-Miller

Behind him he even had a gang - a backdrop of students: the one who looked like Britney, the one who looked like Pete Doherty and the fidgety Abercrombie & Fitch one.

The Tory leader had won the day's fight before he even stood up to the lectern, forcing the Prime Minister to remove the party Whip from three Labour MPs under police investigation. This was a sign of the times: Brown was too gutless to get rid of them, and why had these 'men' not stepped down out of shame?

There was a glimpse of Cameron's Britain - this would be a disciplined government that would shun the 24-hour news agenda that Labour has been seduced by. He described Labour as a 'demented spin-off of the entertainment industry', a phrase about which some Tory-boy speechwriter should be silently brimming over.

A nice idea - but are we really to believe that 'the new generation' of Tories, should they achieve power, will avoid all new media tools they have been playing with for the past term: the blogs, the podcast, the webcams?

This is Oscar season and everyone is having their moment. Even Alastair Campbell perfected pantomime pauses and 'Princess Diana eyes' during his BBC book plug.

With just weeks to go before the vote, Brown has nabbed himself the ultimate producer, Joel Benenson, who was adviser to Obama and prepped him for his TV election debates.

Benenson is just another of a conveyor belt of 'media gurus' Labour has summoned to transform Brown. His role is to make Brown 'look like a statesman'. A bit late - Brown has been in this game for years; he should have looked like a statesman when Obama was in short trousers.

In the end, the only one who can make Brown likable is Brown. Cameron is ahead in the polls, but is not coming across as 'change' enough to get people excited.

It is all to play for and the 24-hour news agenda that Cameron plans to disregard will be the making or the breaking of these men.

Tara Hamilton-Miller is a political adviser and formerly worked for the Conservative Party press team

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