James Forsyth

Brown still believes

Brown still believes
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Peter Oborne’s column this morning contains this telling anecdote:

“Amidst all this shambles, it is only the Prime Minister who keeps faith in his policies. I am told that, at a recent Cabinet meeting, he earnestly told his senior colleagues that it was still possible to win the election, and the main problem was that the Government found it hard to get its message across.

As the Prime Minister spoke, Cabinet ministers rolled their eyes and cast despairing glances at each other.”

One of the key dynamics in British politics right now is that Brown thinks he can still win the next election even if many of the Cabinet do not. This means that Brown isn’t going to quit or go early and that Cabinet members are going to increasingly guard their own interests more carefully than those of the government.

PS Peter’s column is worth reading for his wonderful skewering of Jacqui Smith. Peter’s ability to still be outraged by political feather-bedding no matter how many times it happens plays a key role in keeping our national political life relatively honest. Most hacks—yours truly included—just shrugged their shoulders and said there goes another one when the Jacqui Smith story broke. Peter went to war. He may yet win.


Written byJames Forsyth

James Forsyth is Political Editor of the Spectator. He is also a columnist in The Sun.

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