Louise Bagshawe salutes the new Sultan of Spin.
So, Gordon Brown is a Thatcherite, eh? He admires the greatest living politician and he actually compares himself to her. This from the lifelong Scotland fan who famously declared that one of his favourite sporting moments was Gazza's goal against Scotland in Euro '96.
You know what? There are a lot of people of Scottish descent living in Corby, the major town in my constituency. A town where Labour told civil servants with white collar jobs in one of the most deprived areas of Northants that they were, and I quote, too "white British" to meet government diversity targets. A town where low income people suffer from his scrapping of the 10% tax band. I intend using Mr. Brown's choice of Gazza's goal against Scotland in campaign literature. It matters here because it shows that Gordon Brown will do or say anything if he perceives it will get him a vote. Real Scotland fans will be unimpressed.
This week we have seen a pathetic attempt to grab the initiative after David Cameron wiped out his (truncated) honeymoon. Gordon Brown is promising a new kind of politics whilst hanging on with bitten fingernails to true Blairite spin. First, he "recruits" disaffected Tory and LibDem MPs as advisers, claiming bipartisanship but not checking with the party leaders. Secondly, as with his contemptible claim to have loved a rival's goal against the team he's supported all his life, he dares to compare himself to the colossus of Margaret Thatcher, a woman he reviled throughout his political career. Thirdly, terrified he's had the shortest honeymoon since Jessica Simpson, Brown brought out some classic Blairite gimmickry - "citizens' juries", ie glorified focus groups, to make policy - and he'd announced citizens' juries 17 times already before today.
Bottom line: Brown is not serious. He's a debate-ducking, Blairite-spinning, war-retreating, gimmick-loving politician. I can't pretend I'm too much of a football fan. But I watch when England plays, and I can say I never saw a goal against them that I enjoyed.
Goes to character, Your Honour. Gordon Brown, down in the polls, too "frit" to debate Cameron or call an election, has shown this week who is the true chameleon. This tax-raising, Thatcher-loathing Europhile is not worthy to invoke the great lady's name. Call an election, Prime Minister. We want to fight one. Phony Tony has been replaced by Gimmick Gordon.