Wednesday 23 May 2018

Gay marriage tricky sell to Tory 'loons'

David Cameron is becoming detached from his party's grassroots, writes Ruth Dudley Edwards

British Prime Minister David Cameron
British Prime Minister David Cameron

If David Cameron wasn't so admirably gifted at relaxing, the problems surrounding the legalisation of gay marriage would have been keeping him awake at night.

He has big problems with his party, most of whose members feel ignored and despised by the metropolitan elite who lead it. In fact, these days it's a feature of British politics that its top brass live and socialise mainly in fashionable, influential London circles and are increasingly detached from their traditional supporters.

Labour's Ed Miliband – a career politician who is the offspring of European intellectuals and married to an environmental lawyer – struggles to connect with the working class. The Liberal Democrat Nick Clegg – who is married to a Spanish expert in EU law and until 2005 was almost exclusively an EU official or an MEP – has little in common with sandal-wearing beardies who oppose the party being in government. And Cameron – whose career has been in politics or PR, whose wife designs expensive accessories and whose inner circle is Eton/Oxford – finds it equally difficult to empathise with those pining for the values of yesteryear.

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