A quick question for you. This is something I was discussing last night. Will David Cameron become a great prime minister? My answer is he has to be, otherwise the country is screwed. I also think he has the makings of a great reforming prime minister. He is not Margaret Thatcher, but who is? There is only one Margaret Thatcher and Cameron has to be his own man.
The economy he will inherit if the Conservatives do win the next general election will give him very little room for manoeuvre. Labour inherited a buoyant economy in 1997, and taking a world problem into account, Brown has still managed to wreck it. Where Cameron will have to be great is in reforming the way government conducts its business. He has promised a bonfire of Quangos. Good so far. What about direct democracy though? Are we going to have the opportunity to decide if we want elected mayors and elected police chiefs? Are we going to be able to decide on parliamentary candidates in truly open primaries? Are councillors going to be able to run councils (as opposed to officials running councils) with less interference from central government? What about the EU? Is Cameron going to do nothing and maintain the staus quo. or is he going to allow the people a say on whether Britain stays in Europe or opts for the more favourable position that Switzerland finds itself in?
There are many questions, and many more answers. Tax cuts are not going to happen in the near future. We need to balance the books at some stage. Cameron will need to have a war on waste in the public sector and reign back spending in every government department. Although we must equip our troops with everything they need as the fight for their country (something Brown has failed to do), we must also realise that the MoD is one of the most wasteful departments in Whitehall.
Cameron must be a great reformer of government, returning power from the centre, back to the people. This will engage more people in the democratic process. This is not desirable, it is essential.