by Ray Fleming

YESTERDAY'S Populus poll for The Times, showing Labour with a nine point lead over the Conservatives, was bad enough for the party but the TV appearance of Baroness Warsi, its chairwoman, was even worse. Lady Warsi has made a speciality of rather crude criticism of Ed Miliband and Labour's shadow front bench but on this occasion she turned on her own party and its coalition partners. She acknowledged that there is a “lack of clear narrative” in the government's policies and said that the coalition itself is “incoherent”. She said the Liberal Democrats are “immature in failing to comply with collective cabinet responsibility” and that they had leaked Budget secrets.

It is difficult to know whether Lady Warsi's views matter very much within the party but they are certainly not helpful to the prime minister as he faces an unusually large pile of troublesome issues which reflect the reality of politics better than the pleasures of overseas trips.

If the Times is to believed Britain's three military chiefs are about to ask Mr Cameron to rethink the aircraft carrier decisions made last year.
A week or so ago I said here that Downing Street needs a senior minister to oversee and co-ordinate its communications with the media and to ensure that coalition or party differences are dealt with promptly. The need grows by the day. Reshuffle time?


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