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The American Embassy's view of Labour: Brown was "abysmal", Harman "lightweight", Balls "dull", and McBride "a particularly unpleasant person"

Brown the monster
by Paul Goodman

Whatever one thinks of the Wikileaks saga, the American Embassy's view of Gordon Brown, his potential successors (the Embassy doesn't seem to have spotted Ed Miliband) and his aides is irresistable.

Gordon Brown 

"The US embassy in London wrote off Gordon Brown within a year of his arrival in No 10 after concluding that an "abysmal track record" had left him lurching from "political disaster to disaster", according to cables released by WikiLeaks.  In a scathing assessment of the former prime minister, George Bush's last ambassador to London blamed Brown for presiding over a "post-Blair rudderlessness" which prompted senior Labour figures to complain of their despair to the embassy…The diplomatic cables confirm that Barack Obama's allies were irritated by Brown's intense manner: he interrupted a Thanksgiving call to the current president's ambassador to lobby for a Tobin tax on financial transactions in the face of US opposition."

Harriet Harman

"Harriet Harman, the only woman mentioned as a possible successor, is a relative policy light weight but an adept inter-party operator."

Ed Balls

"Balls has shown himself to be less than suited to the top job: his public speaking is derided as 'dull', his slightly awkward manner as 'charmless', and he has many enemies within the party, precisely because of his relationship with the PM."

David Miliband

"Some consider Miliband, whose nickname at Number 10 was 'egghead', as too brainy to be leader."

Alan Johnson

"It is this lack of killer instinct that, commentators note, make Johnson more suitable to serve as a deputy prime minister, rather than for the top job itself in which he has shown remarkably little interest."

Damian McBride

"A particularly unpleasant person based on our own experiences with him."

Shriti Vadera

"Private secretary told us Vadera would regularly scream from her desk, "Get me a cup of coffee" with a string of expletives attached, prompting three scheduling assistants to leave her office in three months."