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Last Updated: Thursday, 28 September 2006, 19:01 GMT 20:01 UK
Cameron slams Labour 'soap opera'
David Cameron
Mr Cameron was interviewed by XFM presenter Richard Bacon
The "soap opera" of Labour's leadership has diverted attention from more important matters and is "not good for the country, David Cameron has said.

During an XFM interview the Tory leader pondered how much time ministers had spent recently "worrying over Afghanistan, or the NHS or schools".

"They've been worrying about their jobs - I think we've got to get on and have a new leader," he said.

Mr Cameron said he wanted more younger people to support the Conservatives.

Ahead of the Conservative conference in Bournemouth next week, Mr Cameron said he wanted "some responsibility" from the government, rather than seeing "Tony slagging Gordon and Gordon slagging Charles".

"How much time do you think these people, in the last few weeks, have spent worrying about our troops in Afghanistan, or the NHS, or the schools we send our children to," he asked.

It might be a good soap opera, but if we want soap opera, we should switch on the telly and watch EastEnders
David Cameron on the Labour leadership

"They've been worrying about their jobs, and I think we've got to get on and have a new leader.

"It might be a good soap opera, but if we want soap opera, we should switch on the telly and watch EastEnders."

Asked about the chancellor, Mr Cameron said he was "a formidable politician" with some "truly powerful" achievements, such as campaigning for debt relief in Africa.

However, he criticised Mr Brown for being "a believer in great big government".

"He believes if you pull a few more levers, pass a few more laws, tell a few more people what to do, design a more complicated tax and benefit system to force people into doing things, the world would be a better place.

"I think we should be trying to set people free, giving people more responsibility over their lives, getting out of the way sometimes and letting people breathe."

Spooks fan

And he said he was sceptical about Mr Brown's reference to Mercury Prize-winners the Arctic Monkeys when asked about his favourite music.

"I wasn't sure I believed it, and when he couldn't name any of their songs, I thought, 'Well, I was right not to believe it.'"

Staying with popular culture, Mr Cameron told XFM presenter Richard Bacon he was "a big fan" of TV spy thriller Spooks and Napoleonic wartime drama Sharpe.

"I'm a man - I sit there with the remote control, flicking.

If you look at the last election, we came third amongst the under-35s and clearly voting Conservative was something not enough young people wanted to do
David Cameron on his party's image

"That's what we do. Then our wives hit us and say, 'Stop it, please put the remote control down.'

"I do flick quite a lot, just to see whether there's some old thing that I really like."

Mr Cameron urged voters to "have a look" at his party if they thought the government had had "a good go" at running the country, but had got "too many things wrong" since 1997.

And asked if the Conservatives had a problem with their image, he said: "Maybe, and I'm trying to change that.

"If you look at the last election, we came third amongst the under-35s and clearly voting Conservative was something not enough young people wanted to do."


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