Yep, you guessed right: Tony Blair was doing his bit for the Labour cause this morning, with a speech
in his old constituency. In truth, there was little in it of any note – or that we haven't heard countless times from his successor. Thus the Tories were derided as either the "old Tory party," or as confused about their direction of travel. Gordon Brown and Alistair Darling were hailed as the men who brought us through the worst of the economic storm. And even the soundbites ("meeting not just future challenges, but seizing future opportunities") sounded as if they had come from straight from the Brownite copybook. Perhaps the only surprise was that Blair didn't lay into David Cameron as personally, or as heavily, as some of the pre-match coverage
indicated he might.
There'll be much discussion about whether Blair is a Good or a Bad Thing for the Labour campaign. On that front, both the positives and the negatives are plain to see. Yes, he has more glamour and charisma than his successor. But his presence does rather exhume his history with Gordon, and with the British public as a whole. On the evidence of this morning, though, the danger is that voters will tune out from boredom, more than anything else.