Peter Hoskin

The Tories will be thrilled if Brown starts playing the World Saver again

The Tories will be thrilled if Brown starts playing the World Saver again
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Patrick Wintour has an insightful article in today's Guardian, setting out how and why Brown has dithered when it comes to deploying the c-word.  So far as the current landscape is concerned, this passage is particularly striking:

"There is tension between Brown and Darling on how far the campaign can be based on Brown's achievements in saving the world economy, and how far it must be based on visions of the future. Brown's determination to dwell on the fact that he made the correct big decisions in the recession has been one cause of his past reluctance to address the future deficit mountain, and how to deal with it.

It is understood that Brown first agreed with his advisers to be more open about the need for cuts at a meeting of the liaison committee of senior MPs on 16 July and again in an interview with the Financial Times scheduled for his return from the summer break in September.

Brown twice agreed but then changed his mind, arguing that continuing uncertainties in the state of the world economy meant it was not necessary to be upfront about the need to cut back spending from 2011-12." The Tories will be absolutely delighted if Brown is going to rely on his "world saving" exploits in the run up to the election.  Not only do they have ready-made counterarguments - that other countries have left recession sooner than us; that more disagreements have surfaced since the London summit in April, etc. - but it's unlikely that the PM's international bombast will go down well with people losing their jobs in the UK.  Besides, as yesterday showed, the idea that Brown is leading the world is looking more ridiculous than ever.