Leadership was a central theme of David Cameron's speech to the Conservative Party conference this afternoon: leadership provided by him in difficult times. Apparently even the podium looked presidential.
It's a reasonable enough strategy given that the prime minister is the most popular of the political leaders (well in England anyway), not a very tough barrier to surmount. And he does run ahead of the party.
David Cameron also paraded his own liberal credentials, supporting gay marriage and emphasising the importance of overseas development aid even in tough times, something not many Conservatives - or voters - are keen on.
As I drove up to Yorkshire listening to the speech I passed a pub offering 'credit crunch lunches'. It is not easy to offer a positive message in such perilous times. But the prime minister emphasised the need for a 'can do' spirit to overcome excessive pessimism.
The speech was a bit short on content, but what was needed was to provide as rousing a message as was possible in the circumstances and that was largely achieved.