Hague's book of promises to be pulped

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The booklet was meant to be William Hague's bible, a new document for a new era, the fightback against Blair's baloney.

The booklet was meant to be William Hague's bible, a new document for a new era, the fightback against Blair's baloney.

But last night The Common Sense Revolution looked like so much pulped fiction: every copy of the booklet is to be destroyed, because so many pledges have been ditched.

The news delighted Downing Street and Labour MPs were ecstatic about what was being dubbed the shortest-lived suicide note in history.

The Common Sense Revolution, launched at the Tory conference in October, had more guarantees than a John Lewis branch but few lasted to their sell-by date. The patients' and tax guarantees were watered down and the Tories also dropped their opposition to the national minimum wage and the independence of the Bank of England. Yesterday Conservative Central Office said The Common Sense Revolution was still rolling and denied any copies had been pulped.

Charles Kennedy, the Liberal Democrat leader, was scathing about the decision to ditch the document. "When is a guarantee not a guarantee and when does common sense make no sense? When William Hague is in charge ... when the bible of 'Hagueism' is pulped, only months after publication, serious questions have to be asked about William Hague's leadership and judgement."

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