‘Tory marketing campaign is actually beached with General Election quick morphing into 1983’

It’s back to the future with the General Election fast morphing into 1983 with a role reversal twist.

Then Margaret Thatcher and the Conservatives benefited hugely from an error-strewn Labour campaign under a poor leader, dear Michael Foot a wonderful man but not cut out to head a party, and a decisive split in the centre-Left vote with the SDP-Liberal Alliance.

Return to the present and unbelievable Tory gaffes topped by abandoning veterans on the beaches under a worse leader, tetchy Rishi Sunak an entitled man unfit to front a party, plus Reform creating a fatal fracture in the Right-wing vote are gifts for Keir Starmer and Labour.

We even had Tory hapless Cabinet Minister Mel Stride insisting “there should be no question” that sinking Sunak will lead the Tories into election day, reprising Labour’s national executive in 1983 declaring Foot was still the party’s leader.

Stride is correct there should be no question but there is after swamped Sunak’s inexplicable D-Day insult sparked a tsunami of revulsion and HMS Penny Mordaunt launching an unprecedented mid-campaign leadership bid.

Sunak’s £2,000 Labour tax lie backfiring is delicious rough justice. Not because applying the same voodoo calculations to Tory policies would produce a £3,000 rise in the unlikely event the

Conservatives won the looming election. Or the dodgy methodology would stick a £13,000 Tory tax bill on every household since the last election. The Labour satisfaction is from everybody knowing that Sunak put electioneering over honouring the bravest of the brave to justify his £2,000 lie in an ITV interview.

Keir Starmer will come out punching like world undisputed heavyweight boxing champion Oleksandr Usyk in the second and final head-to-head later this month after a below par first bout.

And every time Labour’s leader accuses flyweight Sunak of lying the electorate will recall the truth about the 80th commemoration of D-Day when a flailing Prime Minister didn’t do his duty.

Labour’s manifesto launched on Thursday isn’t as bold or as vivid as some, or perhaps many, in the party would like but it sets out a limited social democratic programme to improve lives and rebuild Britain after 14 torrid Tory years.

Emphasising reassurance over radicalism opens a gap between Starmer’s Broken Britain rhetoric and the change required to fix identified problems from squeezed living standards to shattered public services.

But individually and collectively costed measures from nursery places to a real living wage, improved opportunities and greater security will carry greater weight from a Starmer who stayed in France. California and Silicon Valley beckon, a number of Tories believe, for a Sunak whose reputation isn’t salvable.

One Conservative former Minister screamed to me that Sunak is now a worse leader even than Johnson or Truss. It’s that bad.