"Nobody seriously believes that, in an ideal world, Mr Brown would be his first choice of successor - but Mr Blair is nothing if not a political realist. He knows that a war of succession between Blairites and the Brownites would tear the Labour Party apart and condemn it to certain defeat at the next General Election."
So I argued in my column and accompanying podcast this weekend.
Not an especially original point, I know, but for me, it's still the clincher when assessing the likely denouement of the Blair premiership.
There are a lot of people claiming that Blair is now determined to block Brown, and some of those people are much closer to the action than I am, but for my part I just can't believe Blair would want to inflict on the party the kind of electoral damage a war of succession would cause.
In his Observer column yesterday, Andrew Rawnsley came up with what he thought was an ingenious way for Mr Blair to reclaim his authority and effectively throw down the gauntlet to Brown, by naming a late date for his departure. But that would certainly blow the chances of an orderly handover sky-high in my view.
Meanwhile Labour Watch is speculating that the Alan Milburn leadership bid reported in the Sunday Mirror is really designed to damage Brown and allow David Miliband to come through the middle.
However Mike White, writing on the Comment is Free blog, takes a similar view to me, although I wouldn't quite go as far as he does in attributing most of the current flurry of speculation to mischievous hacks.
White is also dismissive of the prospect of a Milburn challenge, saying: "He has little or no following in the Parliamentary Labour party and he's not daft either."