Last Sunday BBC political commentator Andrew Marr asked Gordon Brown whether he would consider stepping down as PM if it were the majority view of the Labour Party that it would be in its interests for him to do so. Characteristically, Brown replied “No.” He had a job to do, cleaning up Parliament and saving the economy. Today, his options are somewhat more limited. Twice-disgraced and tainted by the expenses scandal, ‘Lord’ Mandelson is Deputy Prime Minister in all but title. His job is to save what’s left of the Blair Reich. Olympics Minister (yes, that’s her job), the stupid but thick-skinned and loyal Blairite Tessa Jowell has rejoined the cabinet, in another move designed to show that there is no room for corruption in the Brown government.
Tessa was an enthusiastic proponent of the murky and barmy Blair supercasino scheme. Her ‘estranged’ husband, David Mills, may serve 4.5 years in an Italian gaol (see comment below) for abetting Blair’s friend, Italian PM Silvio Berlusconi, in corruptly abstracting and offshoring Fininvest assets. She apparently didn’t notice that he paid off their £340,000 mortgage with a bribe, claiming she was too busy to notice. Mr Mills, a friend of Formula One supremo, Bernie Ecclestone, also allegedly facilitated the notorious £1 million loan to New Labour early in the Blair First Reich, which saw tobacco advertising on racing cars exempted from the ban on sports promotion. Who will be next to rejoin this cabinet of fools and fouls – Vinny Jones, perhaps?
This morning it was ‘revealed’ in the Murdoch press that Peter Mandelson had exchanged emails questioning Brown’s leadership credentials with none other than ‘psycho’ Derek Draper (Thus passim). Ahead of grisly European Parliament election results, Charlie Falconer, Blair’s ex-flatmate, lawyer, ex-Lord Chancellor and New Labour Illuminatus, pronounced that it might be in the best interests of the party for Gordon to vacate 10 Downing St. Tessa Jowell followed through with the observation that Gordon loved the party so much that he would always step down rather than damage its prospects. Characteristically, Brown nixed this twitter with a defiant speech to activists repeating that he he had no intention of stepping down. So there you have it. Open war. Brown’s staunch allies (Mr and Mrs Balls, Fagin McDarling and the cleaning lady) are menaced by Blair’s Orcs, who have risen from the dead and are now pissing out from inside the big tent.
Brown will step down. It is even conceivable that Mandelson will try to take the reins ‘on a temporary basis’ while a leadership squabble takes place (Thus passim). Never mind the polls, the bookies are offering a measly 6/5 on Brown leaving office. A general election is inevitable, which Thus predicts the Tories will win with a majority of between 240 and 280 seats. Labour will possibly fall to third place behind the Lib Dems. Having lost control of all the UK county councils – while Tory Boris Johnson rules the GLC – a blue Reich will descend, too comprehensive by half for democracy or even for sound decision-taking by the Tories – look what happened after the Labour landslide.
That’s all she wrote, except to repeat that in order to avoid the Blair/Brown problem, Cameron needs to ditch George Osborne if he expects to have any chance of tackling the inherited economic nightmare. Ken Clarke would make a good war Chancellor. That much said, today’s ‘email evidence’ confirms that hapless toff Osborne told the truth when he claimed that Mandelson, then an EU Commissioner, had ‘poured poison into his ear’ about Gordon Brown aboard Deripaska’s yacht last year, where he and Mandy were guests at James Murdoch’s birthday bash. The Murdoch press chose to spin against Osborne on that occasion. Today they put the boot into Brown. Time to write the memoirs, Gordon. Make them brief. Nobody will read them.