Sunday, January 06, 2008

Blairites can offer Brown fresh thinking

A week ago today Stephen Byers wrote a piece in the Sunday Times declaring that Tony Blair was "history" and it was time for the Labour Party to get behind Gordon Brown. I thought this was a significant development, but didn't blog on it at the time because it was New Year and we had people staying and I had loads of cooking to do etc etc.

I did however devote my weekly column in the Newcastle Journal to the story, and this can be read in full on the companion blog.

The digested read is that this olive branch by Byers is intended to lay the ground for other key Blairites such as Alan Milburn and David Blunkett to bring forward new policy ideas without that interpreted as some sort of leadership challenge to Gordon.

I argue that this fresh thinking is what the Brown administration now desperately needs, and that the Prime Minister should accept such help wherever it is being offered.

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Anonymous said...

Brown is undoubtedly short of policies and direction, but he will be loathed to show any weakness to tbe British public or start rewinding the Labour clock to the Blair days.

Tom said...

Why on earth would Brown be insane enough to listen to policy ideas brought forward by David Blunkett when he's in a hole caused (partly, but significantly) by policy ideas brought forward by David Blunkett (prisons crisis, ID cards, anti-terror theatre legislation etc.)?

Blunkett was cast into the outer darkness for a reason, and that reason is that he's utterly unfit for public office.

About the only thing Brown's done that's admirable is row back from the loonier shores of Blairism, in fact some people (me, for instance) would argue that he needs to do more than this. Scrapping Blunkett's ID cards scheme would be money-saving and popular, yet Brown nailed himself to the mast of that particular sinking ship only yesterday. It's not washed up Blairites that he needs, it's situational awareness.

janestheone said...

isn't it because they (Milburn et al) want jobs in Gordon's government, while he still has one?