MPs sing from same hymnsheet - great minds think alike?

David Jones (above) and an excerpt from the press release Image copyright PA
Image caption David Jones (above) and an excerpt from the press release

As if the eurozone and American debt crises, added to riots in north London, were not enough to disturb the holidays of the Conservative leadership, today's Guardian reports fresh dissent among Tory backbenchers.

Before government whips order a large whisky poolside, re-assurance is at hand. Some Tory MPs are still singing from the same hymn sheet.

Here's the Wales Office Minister, David Jones, announcing on his website, that the Government has "managed to save a staggering £3.75bn of taxpayer's money simply by slashing the waste that Labour allowed to spiral out of control".

He adds: "The savings have been achieved by prudent housekeeping: doing sensible things, such as not renting unnecessary buildings, scrapping wasteful IT projects, negotiating better deals from suppliers and reducing spending on advertising and consultants."

Many a Tory MP will have thought "couldn't put it better myself" - which may explain why Caroline Dineage, Simon Kirby, Andrew Bridgen, Jeremy Lefroy and Phillip Lee all reacted to the news in a way that is best described as verbatim, give or take a word or two.

Mr Jones says: "The amount saved in just 10 months equals more than £225 of taxes for every working household in Clwyd West. It is always right that money should be spent where it is needed rather than simply frittered away. These important savings mark the beginning of a new ethos in Whitehall after thirteen years of Labour waste."

His colleagues agree, although they did have the nous to insert the names of their own constituencies before issuing the identikit press releases.

The next version will presumably set out how much money has been saved by one researcher in Conservative Campaign Headquarters writing the same press release for the party's MPs to issue in their own name.