David Cameron writes for The Sun this morning and tackles him on four key areas:
- The need for a referendum on the new EU Treaty. Describing Tony Blair’s agreement with other European leaders as a "sell-out" Mr Cameron says that the new EU foreign policy apparatus puts our relationship with America at risk. , He says that honouring the 2005 Labour promise to give the British people a referendum should be at the top of Mr Brown’s in-tray.
- The NHS. "Labour have doubled spending on health – but does anyone think the health service is twice as good?" Mr Cameron calls for an immediate stop to A&E and maternity service cuts and urges Gordon Brown to embrace the Tory plan to stop political interference in day-to-day decisions.
- Schools. The Conservative leader calls for Conservative ideas on discipline and rigorous teaching methods to be adopted by the Government.
- Fighting crime. "Instead of wasting billions on an ID card scheme that won’t work, the new Prime Minister should do the things that will make a real difference in protecting our security: community policing, more prison places, drug rehab services and a proper border police force."
In an article in The Guardian, Tania Branigan and Will Woodward look at some of the other areas where the Tories may seek to put Brown on the back foot:
- Press him hard at PMQs. Noting
that George Osborne has often got under his skin at Treasury Questions,
David Cameron has the opportunity to bring out the famous Brown temper
- Iraq. There are big divisions in
Labour over the war and Harriet Harman has fuelled backbench Labour
hopes that there’ll be a change of policy direction. Whatever Brown
does on Iraq he will upset some section of his party.
- Sleaze. Highlighting the inquiry into
the Smith Institute the Guardian’s two journalists say that the Tories
and LibDems will want to portray Brown’s chief fundraiser, Sir Ronald
Cohen, as the new Lord Levy. The first CCHQ press release of the Brown era focused on alleged sleaze in Brown’s leadership campaign.
- The economy. With interest rates
rising, house prices slowing and disposable incomes being squeezed,
will Darling be inheriting some difficult choices? Some of those
difficult choices will involve spending decisions. The looming
Comprehensive Spending Review will be the most challenging of the
- Industrial action. The tight spending
regime could see nurses take industrial action soon. Postal workers
strike tomorrow. The RMT is also threatening industrial action in two
- The environment. Oliver Letwin is
reportedly convinced that Brown is not instinctively green in the way
that he cares about international justice issues. A real opportunity
for David Cameron to continue to lead here?
Andrew Haldenby of the Reform think tank writes
for YourPlatform today about the need for Gordon Brown to take a very
different approach from Tony Blair to issues of tax and public service