It’s tough to think of a more difficult speech for David Cameron to have to deliver. Under pressure from UKIP in the polls and facing discontent from within his own party, the Prime Minister had to spell out his vision for Britain’s future in Europe while taking care not to completely alienate Britain’s European neighbours, his coalition partners, and the many multinational businesses that make the UK their home.
With the reaction pouring in, Keene has used Wordle to take a closer look at his speech – which could turn out to be one of the most important of his leadership. While you will quickly be able to see the main themes, Keene was intrigued by two of the messages contained inside.
First was the word ‘want’. Despite the risk of seeming to demand things from a sceptical Europe – and his comment from experience that ‘you do not always get what you want’ – this speech was not short on ‘I want…’. Interestingly, ‘All countries want…’, ‘the EU wants…’ and ‘friends around the world want…’ were all one-offs.
The other phrase that stood out was ‘single market’. Many of the Prime Minister’s Tory colleagues are keen to redesign Britain’s relationship with Europe based on this, while ditching what they see as a raft of unnecessary legislation in other areas. Not only does this fit with Cameron’s relentlessly pro-trade rhetoric, it’s also designed to appease companies concerned that Britain might be left without access to the world’s largest trade bloc.