Jeremy Hunt MP, speaking Tuesday night to an audience at Engine, heralded the end of the era of political spinning. According to Hunt, the spinning a tangled web which he plotted from the professionalisation of political marketing in the 1980s through to the present day will be brushed away during the recession. The task now is unravel the web and win back the trust of the electorate. Before anyone could make a cheap jibe, Hunt made his own joke or rather a jibe aimed at politicians. Bill Clinton, so the joke went, appeared beaming on the steps of the Vatican after an audience with the Pope and declared that œwe’ve agreed on 80% of the issues discussed. To which the Pope, looking weary, replied œYes,Yes. But we were talking about the 10 Commandments. The joke was not lost on the audience of marketing, PR and public affairs consultants drawn from across the Engine Company. Hunt is well placed to engage in this debate. A poster boy for Cameron’s Tories in Surrey, Hunt ran a successful publishing company before becoming an MP and is now the Shadow Secretary of State for Culture Media and Sport. But is he right? And what does it mean for the Tories? Hunt certainly won over the audience when he argued that politicians seem to have forgotten that they key to successful marketing of a product including a political party is to have a good product. The challenge for the Tories as they have known for some time is to create a good product and restore faith in it. He got a more sceptical response when he heralded the end of the era of spin. And it remains to be seen whether the Tories if they win the next election as seems increasingly likely – will communicate with people in new way. Speaking the night before ITV announced their dreadful end of year results, Hunt demonstrated a good grasp of the challenges facing those working across his brief arts, media and sport. He was particularly excited by the digital revolution and understood the importance of investing in the right technical infrastructure, particularly if the UK is to support its valuable creative industries. Hunt also questioned the Competition Commissioner’s decision to block Project Kangeroo, the online TV joint venture between ITV, Channel 4 and BBC Worldwide. He argued that this beleaguered venture, was a victim of the UK’s failure to model the market in which ITV was competing correctly and called for new models to assess future proposals. No doubt there are those at ITV who will agree with Hunt. So where next for Jeremy Hunt? Last year, we hear, he was voted The Most Fanciable MP (cue more jibes about MPs). This year he, along with his party, seems to be developing as a more serious player.