Conservatives rope in Squier, Knapp, Dunn Communications

Iain Martin’s general election commentary for the Wall Street Journal is rapidly become a must-read for me due to his record of unearthing useful bits of extra information that shed an extra light on the big political stories.

This week he had a good piece on the Conservative Party’s preparation for televised party leader debates during the general election:

Advisers close to U.S. President Barack Obama have been drafted by David Cameron to help the Conservatives in their election campaign against Gordon Brown and Labour.

The Tories have signed a contract with Squier, Knapp, Dunn Communications—a Washington-based Democrat-leaning political consultancy— to help them prepare for the first-ever television debates between leaders during a British election campaign.

That firm’s name is familiar to me as I know someone who has worked with them in American politics, so I asked them what they made of this appointment.

Their response:

Certainly explains where a large chunk of the Tories cash will be going. SKD are one of the most expensive firms out there.

That certainly fits with the pattern of a party that employs a head of communications (Andy Coulson) on a higher salary than the Prime Minister.

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