So Hague and Clark are at loggerheads over the Lisbon Treaty according to Peter Osborne.
Europe is a fault line that has blighted the Tories since the mid-80s.
Since the putsch of Margaret, Europe has become the rallying call for those who misremember Thatcher and how closely she put the UK within the EC. So an eeiry sight of a dogmatic Tory appeared.
To be honest this lot are chasing some kind of ideological purity in the way that the left pursued in the Labour party post-79. A purity that has never existed. These people would rather see a Labour victory than see a pragmatic Conservative party in power and it is those people that are betraying party traditions not the other way round.
Let me explain, since its creation the Conservative Party has had one ideology - power. That's it, nothing more. If being a one-nation Tory got them power, then that's what the party became. If it was Friedman and economic liberalism then that would do to.
I like pragmatic governments, those that are generally use any means to help the country, (and of course in turn help their party win elections). Blair was pragmatic, hell, Thatcher was one of the most pragmatic leaders the country ever had. Although in my opinion Thatcher would never run away from Parliament to argue what she thought was right (even when she was wrong).
Some would say that parties need to identify with their supporters. Well no not really. They need to identify with the 20% of floating voters that decide our elections. I think it's fair to say that this 20% were disgusted with the left ideology of the likes of Foot and the right ideology that infected Hague, the two Ians and Howard's campaigns.
That is why Cameron is consistently ahead in the polls, the latest Comres gives a Conservative majority of 104. People like the pragmatic young communicator, again much like they liked what they heard and saw with Blair.
Blair knew the importance of kicking the ideologues into touch, so does Cameron. Indeed, if bedblockers become a problem (see below) then it could give him that decisive Clause 4 moment to finally break perceptions of the Nasty-Europe-obsessed party and place the Tories back in the pragmatic bracket that led them to be called the "natural party of government".
And if they want to be true to their roots, some tories had better remember that.