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Conservatives Should Welcome Jeremy Corbyn as Labour Leader - Sincerely

18/08/2015 15:44 BST | Updated 18/08/2016 10:59 BST

So, here we are. The shrieking of horror from the centre left at the thought of Comrade Corbyn coming to power is reaching a crescendo. Rumours are heard of dark dealings in members' clubs and the seats of power, and the Dark Lord himself, Peter Mandelson, has had a surprising lack of success in his attempts to ask the three non-Corbyn candidates in the Labour leadership election. Where once he was the master of all he surveyed - responsible, lest we forget, for ensuring Brown stayed in office after the disastrous election results of 2009 - he is now as hapless and impotent as everyone else who attempts to take arms against the bearded sage of Islington. Come September 12th, there seems little chance that Liz, Yvette or Andy will be preparing any victory speeches.

This has been greeted with a mixture of mirth and disbelief from the journalistic establishment, most of whom seem to believe that a Corbyn administration would be a gift to the Conservative government. It is perfectly possible that it will be; after all, the idea that Labour failed to win in the May elections 'because they weren't left wing enough' seems entirely unlikely. But many people seem to have ignored another likelihood entirely: that a Corbyn-led Labour party is exactly what the Conservative party needs to debate against.

Leaving aside the strengths and weaknesses of David Cameron as a Prime Minister and leader of his party, there is no doubt that he, along with George Osborne, is a significant figure of both lofty principle and low cunning. That the latter often wins out over the former is merely a reflection of contemporary politics. In Corbyn, there may yet be low cunning, but none of it has been seen on the campaign trail. He refuses to attack his opponents, and does not need to brief hysterical stories about their failings. Perhaps this is in the certain knowledge that his followers will do so for him on Twitter. I am convinced that Liz Kendall is now regarded by most people as a Tory; perhaps one day she will cross the floor and thereby confirm the sneers of her detractors.

Yet what can be confidently expected from a Cameron vs Corbyn Parliament is not the drab old 'business as usual'. Corbyn's politics might be as passé as his dress sense, a romantic ideal that bears no relation to the real world, and entirely incapable of winning a General Election in 2020. But what he will bring to a party associated for so long with the most tiresome middle management is a sense of freshness and excitement, helped by the public support that his campaign has engendered. It is a relief that Labour will not be led by yet another middle-aged Oxbridge graduate who has spent their life inside the world of Westminster. He may yet lose the war. But battles on a scale that Cameron and Osborne have never dreamt of before are about to begin.