The Conservatives have just published their poster for the Eastleigh by-election. Like most campaigns, they’re capitalising on the fact that the Tory candidate, Maria Hutchings, is local. But in their slogan they’ve also told voters that she’s the one constituents can trust.

This shows that, even though Nick Clegg argued in the Q&A after his speech yesterday that the contest shouldn’t be about Chris Huhne, the party wants to make as much of the former Energy Secretary’s exit as they possibly can in this bloody battle.

UPDATE, 17.40pm: A rather sardonic Lib Dem source tells me:

‘I have to say, campaigning against Chris Huhne when he’s not a candidate is an intriguing idea.’

Tags: By-election, Chris Huhne, Conservatives, Eastleigh, UK politics