‘Name the date, or we’ll take you out’

Michael Connarty MP has an idea in the House Magazine out this week.  It’s a pretty tough proposal:

“Blair will have to name the day he is going and clear up the leadership transition or the unions will have to take him out – they’re the only ones with the muscle”.

The opinions expressed above do not necessarily reflect the views of The Daily’s writers.  Well, not all of them anyway.


12 Responses to ‘Name the date, or we’ll take you out’

  1. Yes, it’s great to hear the idea of the unions bringing down a Labour PM being floated again.

    Particularly after it worked so well last time.

  2. HenryG says:

    How could they take him out? What a bizarre thing to say. We know he’s going so there’s no political leverage really.

  3. Ian G says:

    The last ‘coup’ forced the PM to declare that he’d be going within a year, and I think that was probably a good thing all round.

    Arguing about whether it’ll be six months or nine months seems pretty pointless to me, apart from the implications for the elections in May.

  4. HenryG says:

    If I were Brown I don’t think I’d be desperate to take over in March or April. We’re going to get thumped in the local and devolved elections and it would be a disastrous start to his Premiership. Not much consolation if you’re a councillor fighting to retain your seat and all you hear on the doorstep is ‘not this time’ in from former Labour supporters.

  5. TimBob says:

    Does anyone care that Gordon Brown will probaby not beat Cameron at the next election?


    What’s the Plan B if polls continue like this? Brown’s damaged goods. Neal Lawson often says that New Labour isn’t New enough or Labour enough. Brown looks like the oldest person in the New Labour. Blair looks younger and fresher and dare I say has a better chance of beating Cameron than Brown. OK so we know that he’s going in the next year. But who the hell do we replace him with?? We must make decisions on the basis of the way the world is, and not as we’d like it to be. Brown ain’t cutting it. And deep down, you know it yourself. Don’t you.

  6. Adele says:

    Who gives one what Neal Lawson thinks?

  7. TimBob says:

    I’m sure Neal Lawson supports Brown, but I just think that we need someone fresh and dynamic. Renewal isn’t just about policy, it’s about people and personality. In my office let’s just say Brown has not one backer out of 9 people over Cameron. And I was amazed. I’m thinking our best bet could be Johnson or Miliband, but definately not Reid. If James Purnell or Andy Burnham had more experience I’d back them. I just think we need to acknowledge the fact that Brown would have beaten Hague, Howard or IDS, but in 2009 against Cameron he probably will lose it for us.

  8. TimBob says:

    Here is the one word people in my office (an informal, unscientific focus group, but the sort of conversations that will take place near to the next election) each said they associate with Brown:


    This is what they said on Cameron


    We need someone to really go after Cameron and I think Brown is increasingly the wrong person to win.

  9. Glass House says:


    Unfortunately there’s no one else. Reid isn’t going to win back the 2005 Lib-Dem switchers, people seem to have accepted the Johnson doesn’t quite have it.

    I’m starting to think that Miliband might be a good choice – but he obviously isn’t interested in going up against Gordon this time.

  10. I think it’s a mistake to believe that Labour can choose a fresh new leader who can ‘do a Cameron’.

    To the extent that Cameron has been successful so far, he has succeeded by distancing himself from his party’s recent past and limiting policy pledges as much as possible to nice things that people can’t really disagree with.

    That’s quite plausible for an opposition leader – the great man himself used similar tactics in 1997 – but it would be ridiculous for a member of a government, so Labour need the leader best place to win for Labour on Labour’s record since 1997.

    In our world, Miliband, Johnson etc. are big political figures – in the outside world, most people have never heard of them and I’d imagine under 10% could tell you which government position they currently occupy or what they think about anything.

    Brown is one of only two genuinely significant figures in British politics since 1997. Cameron has had a year, so far, to try and catch him up.

    Anyone other than Brown who took over from Blair would be starting from further back than where Cameron was when he took over as Tory leader.

    That said, I reckon a few of them agree with you that Brown’s going to lose – I think he’s still got a good chance of narrow win – and are positioning themselves to fight a shambolic Cameron/Campbell coalition at an election in 2013.

  11. Liz says:

    What a disgraceful statement by Mr Connarty. “Taking “someone out” is offensive. I do not think that Gordon Brown will necessarily win the next election as the country may well want a fresh face. In addition the PR machine from the Tories is working hard to discredit Gordon Brown and there has been little counter offensive action yet. I personally feel that David Miliband is the only credible person to take on David Cameron. He is likeable, persuasive and has no enemies that I know of.

  12. “He is likeable, persuasive and has no enemies that I know of.”

    You’re obviously forgetting Draco Malfoy and Lord Voldemort.

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