Peter Hoskin

Where would we be if Brown had faced more internal opposition?

Where would we be if Brown had faced more internal opposition?
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Trust Frank Field to come up with another revealing anecdote about Gordon Brown in tonight's Panorama.  This time it's about Brown's raid on pension funds in 1997, and is reported by the Telegraph thus:

On the programme, Mr Field also recalls the day in 1997 when Gordon Brown, the Chancellor, abolished tax credits paid to pension funds and companies: "I went to see Tony Blair after that budget was announced when the raid occurred on pension pots, and I explained to him what had happened and he said in a rather charming ashion, Gordon didn't explain it that way to me."

It's indicative of how - despite the constant feuding between the Blairites and the Brownites - Blair seemed to leave Brown to it on the economic front.  You can't help but wonder what the public finances would look like now if Brown's plans had faced more internal opposition when he was Chancellor.  Now, it's left to Alistair Darling to fight the good fight - but it's all too little, too late.