Daniel Korski

Gordon Brown knows he is finished

Gordon Brown knows he is finished
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Gordon Brown knows he is finished. My prediction is that he will not use his constitutional right to hang on if the Tories are the largest party in a hung parliament. OK, the Labour leader might try to stay in No 10 – for a second, maybe a minute, perhaps even an academic quarter, trying desperately to persuade a triumphant Nick Clegg that a Lib-Lab coalition is vital for Britain, and that the Tories are evil and must be resisted.

But he will soon give up, throw down the phone in anger, shout at Stewart Wood, ask his colleagues to leave him alone and sit in the office alone for a minute, acknowledging his Greek fate. Sue Nye and Peter Mandelson will come in and they all will discuss what kind of message to give the waiting cameras – graceful exit, apocalyptic warnings from the No 10 threshold or a teary, sympathy-reaching “I-gave-it-my-all-for-a-country-I-love” statement.

He will then turn to his new task – staying on as Labour leader or ensuring that a disciple gets a leg up in the next leadership election -- anything to deny David Miliband the party crown. He will be marshalling the arguments in his head – that he ran the Tories close, much closer than anyone would have thought possible six months ago; and that he is the only one trusted enough to battle the Tories on the economy, their main focus in government.

How do I know all this? Well, I don’t. But I sense it, as do you. If you don’t, read the Prime Minister’s latest Guardian interview, observe the Labour campaign’s zigzagging (“I agree with Nick” vs “Nick Clegg is a threat to national security”), note the squabbling among Labour leaders and the last-minute desperate measures (What else is an Elvis impersonator?). These are the hallmarks of a dying campaign, and one which knows that in its bones. In a few days, the feeling will have spread from its bones, to its arteries, vital organs and finally to its head. Gordon Brown is done for.