What is the Labour party to do as poll after poll shows them that they really do have a 'Loser not a Leader'? Tessa Jowell's revelation that the London election campaign to keep Ken in power is being guided by Tony Blair, Alistair Campbell and Philip Gould shows the Labour party dilemma in tableau.
Labour must hold London but large numbers of London voters have just had their taxes raised by Brown's last budget effects coming into force a week before the vote. What kind of political management was that, didn't Labour realise these destructive measures would coincide with the London elections? Or did Brown really keep everyone, including the business managers in the Party, in the dark and spring them as a complete surprise last year? And if he did, what kind of behaviour is that as well?
Labour has lost control of the political timetable because of the secretive compulsions of its strange Leader. There are reports that it has taken weeks of blandishments to get Brown to understand that it is wrong to raise taxes on the poor; while he accepts it might be causing political difficulties, he hasn't accepted it at all and is now pretending he didn't agree to the deal that Darling and the Treasury offered Frank Field and large numbers of furious and frightened Labour MPs to withdraw their threat to vote against the government on Monday. As a result the threat is restored and the numbers of government opponents has increased.
Labour cannot really oust yet another leader without calling an election, both for the leadership and for the country. The end of this Parliament is too close now.
Perhaps it would be best if Brown were to be made to understand that his health cannot allow him to continue after the end of this session, a caretaker leader be installed to oversee the choice of new leader, and a general election held in the Autumn. The deepening shadow of the election that never was, both for the leadership last summer and the country last Autumn, has blighted the Labour party for long enough . Brown will cost them London, the local elections, and office if he isn't managed into retirement.
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