DAVID Cameron tried to rescue the Tory party’s general election campaign yesterday, warning that five more years of Gordon Brown would be a “disaster for Britain”.
In a speech to party activists at the Conservative party’s Spring conference in Brighton, he tried to soothe worries over opinion polls that show his party’s lead over Labour crumbling.
A YouGov poll for the Sunday Times yesterday showed that the Conservative lead had narrowed to just two points, putting Labour on course to win the most seats at the general election.
“This is an election we have to win because our country is a complete mess and it is our patriotic duty to turn it around and give it a better future,” the Tory leader said as he delivered his keynote speech without notes.
Copying a tactic out of New Labour’s playbook, Cameron unveiled a pledge card with six promises. He said a Tory government would cut the deficit, boost enterprise, support families, protect the NHS, raise standards in schools and reform politics.
Cameron was speaking a day after his shadow chancellor George Osborne confirmed that a Tory government would cut corporation tax within 50 days of an election victory, although the change is unlikely to come into force until 2011.
The headline rate will be reduced from 28p to 25p, while the rate for small companies will be cut to 20p. The Tories will scrap a number of reliefs and allowances to fund the move.
Osborne also repeated a pledge to give new businesses a one-year break from paying National Insurance on their first ten employees.