His core demands would not have surprised those watching the debate. He spoke of the need to boost competitiveness in the single market, of exempting Britain from ever-closer union, strengthening the role of national parliaments in EU law-making, and, crucially, curbing access to in-work benefits for EU migrants.
It was a speech, however, that largely failed to silence his critics. That ardent Eurosceptic Tory backbenchers dismissed it as ‘pretty thin gruel’ comes as no surprise; they have been agitating for Brexit since the 1990s and were never likely to be won over.
More worrying for the pro-EU camp should be the response among voters. Since Cameron has assumed a more prominent role in the debate there has been no bounce in support for Remain. On the contrary, the race has tightened as the Leave side has gained ground.