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Don’t fall for Ruth Davidson’s swagger – she’s a liberal not a conservative


A month ago the Conservative Home website published a league table of satisfaction with prominent Tories. Ruth Davidson, leader of the Scottish Conservatives, was second favourite, behind Home Secretary Sajid Javid.

Given her antics over the past few weeks, I suspect she may have slipped down the rankings.

Last week Davidson let it been known, via ‘friends’, that she would be willing to take up a peerage towards her ambition of leading the Conservative Party. I am unsure which is more arrogant – her assumption that she deserves a peerage or her plan to use it as a stop-gap in her bid for a Westminster seat. It certainly is an odd way to go about parachuting oneself into the top job in Westminster. But make no mistake, Davidson has designs on Theresa May’s job. 

One of May’s few redeeming characteristics is that she is self-effacing and unafraid of the hard work needed to become Prime Minister – unlike Davidson. Should the Tories ever consider the latter as a potential party leader, they would do so at their peril. I couldn’t care less about a politician’s religion, race, sex or sexual preference. I care about the ability to do a good job and sound judgment, or lack of it. On that basis Davidson is unfit to be Tory leader.

She is certainly no conservative. She openly advocates a liberal narrative, especially as a means to attract younger voters to the party. But didn’t the Tories learn their lesson from chasing the youth vote in the last general election? Policies designed to do that reek of desperation and repel traditional voters. It is a losing strategy. Davidson also campaigned ardently for Remain. Britain really doesn’t need another EU appeaser at the helm of government. One is enough.

During the recent row over Boris Johnson’s burka remarks, Davidson chose to cement her feminist and LGBTQ credentials by supporting the misogynistic Islamists who insist that women cover their faces. Anyone who says wearing the burka is comparable to wearing a crucifix, as she did, shows an astounding lack of judgment. The burka is a cultural symbol of the oppression of women whereas the crucifix is a religious symbol, inoffensive to most, except the Islamic fundamentalists with whom Davidson chose to align herself.

True to her liberal agenda, Davidson wants to push trans rights further up the list of government priorities. Britain is facing Islamist terrorism, the threat of an anti-Semitic political party winning the next general election and the ongoing betrayal of May over Brexit. Surely these concerns should take preference over the indoctrination of primary school children to change their sex?

Davidson needs to re-set her moral compass or make room for a proper conservative who doesn’t care for divisive identity politics and the so-called rights of disturbed men demanding to invade women’s bathroom spaces. Perhaps she would like to step out of her Holyrood bubble and join the rest of us on the ground. Then she might get a sense of perspective of what really concerns British voters.

Most of us have had enough of virtue-signalling politicians. They appeal to very few except their fellow travellers on the Left. Political narratives need to shift from emotions to reason if politicians want to attract the silent majority. Yet Davidson, like many of her compatriots, cannot grasp that these voters want competent politicians without agenda or ego. And virtue-signal she must. Writing an article on capitalism, Davidson showed that she had fallen victim to Trump Derangement Syndrome when she compared Donald Trump to Jeremy Corbyn.

The US economy has been booming thanks to Trump’s financial policies, yet Corbynomics would turn the UK into another Venezuela. It is an inappropriate correlation to make. Davidson also needs to be reminded that capitalism is not responsible for ‘hollowing out’ communities, housing shortages or low wages in the UK – the culprit is uncontrolled immigration, a policy advocated by the EU of which she seems enraptured.

And just in time for a leadership bid she has published a book titled Yes She Can: Why Women Own The Future. Where does Davidson find the time to be an effective MSP for her Edinburgh constituency amidst all this self-promotion? Aside from the blatant copying of Obama’s campaign slogan – ‘Yes we can’ – I question the conservative values of any Tory politician who wants to associate herself with one of the worst American presidents in history. Obama’s divisive Left-wing identity politics were responsible for inflaming racial conflict in the US and his appeasement of IsIamist regimes further destabilised the Middle East.

I certainly don’t want a bunch of women to ‘own the future’. We are already seeing the damage that destructive feminist ideology is wreaking on society and we don’t need any more of it. This kind of thinking from a politician is disastrous. We will be condemned to live in an eternal post-Liberal Puritan universe should Davidson ever become Prime Minister.

Davidson’s appeal is her confidence and aura of authority. Though masquerading as strong and protective, the reality is that her type of politics will suffocate conservatism and ultimately destroy it. Core Conservative voters are already considering either not voting in the next general election or migrating to Ukip. This will almost certainly split the Tory vote and hand Corbyn the keys to No 10. Tories, be warned: if Davidson ever gets anywhere near fulfilling her ambitions the party will surely splutter to a halt and crumble into oblivion.

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Karen Harradine
Karen Harradine
Karen is an anthropologist and freelance journalist. She writes on anti-Semitism, Israel and spirituality. She is @KarenH777on Twitter.

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