“Clarke's return kills ‘toffs' and it kills ‘novice',” said one adviser this week. “You look at that team now and you think, ‘yes'.” And that was an adviser to Mr Brown speaking.
“I don't know why anyone thought that people were going to be grateful for the fact that the economy is going down the spout,” conceded one Labour strategist this week. He added that he thought that if the polls got worse month after month and end in wipeout in the local and European elections on June 4, Mr Brown could yet face a leadership challenge.
Of course, given Labour's falling poll ratings, this kind of murmuring is hardly surprising. But it will still be morbidly fascinating to see if - and when - the knives come out, once again, for Gordon.