From the Editor of The Daily Telegraph
111 Buckingham Palace Road,
London SW1W 0DT
Thursday, May 7, 2015
As the country goes to the polls, I am taking the unprecedented step of sending you The Telegraph’s leading article.
That’s because we view this general election as the most important since 1979.
It marks a watershed moment: do we continue under the Conservatives with the open, enterprise-led economic approach that has underpinned our prosperity for nearly 40 years?
Or do we revert to an old-style, “government-knows-best” culture championed by the most Left-wing Labour leader for a generation?
All the frenzied talk about a hung parliament and the surge of the SNP is a distraction because in the end, the choice is straightforward: do we want Mr Cameron to continue in Number 10 or to see Ed Miliband installed as prime minister?
The Daily Telegraph urges its readers to vote Conservative.
This was the message that the Telegraph sent out by email to its readers overnight. It’s an unprecedented step from a newspaper – going beyond writing an editorial in the paper to using its mailing list to project the encouragement to vote Conservative. CCHQ have since followed suit, urging Tory supporters to read and share the editorial which Evans’ email was promoting.
As various Labourites have squealed in recent days, the scale and strength of endorsements from Conservative-leaning papers has been quite remarkable. (Though as Fraser Nelson has noted with this remarkable old Mirror front page, there was never some golden age in which newspapers didn’t express a view.)
The degree to which the Sun, Mail, Telegraph et al have landed their punches this week does suggest there’s something paradoxical going on – as the print media’s influence wanes, the degree to which they seek to use it increases. Perhaps it’s an attempt to leverage a reduced readership more strongly – trying to generate the same overall impact with a strong endorsement delivered to 500,000 readers that you might once have got from a milder line communicated to a million.