Left Watch

« Lib Dem MP challenges the Prime Minister to a debate on the NHS | Main | No wonder he's the Tories' secret weapon; Voters' confidence in Ed Balls is low and sinking »

Sayeeda Warsi claims Alistair Darling's memoirs reinforce doubts about Ed Balls' suitability for high office

By Tim Montgomerie
Follow Tim on Twitter.

Screen shot 2011-09-01 at 08.02.50 Many have predicted that Alistair Darling's memoirs were most likely to raise eyebrows (geddit?) and early extracts suggest they are not going to disappoint.

Darling worked particularly closely with Brown, both when the latter was Chancellor and PM.

Darling may have been scrupulously loyal throughout Labour's time in office but he's about to catch up for lost time in his book "Back from the Brink: 1,000 Days at Number 11"...

  • Darling will describe Brown's temperament as "brutal and volcanic";
  • In new evidence that the former Labour PM was always briefing against colleagues Darling will accuse Brown of "making bullets" which were then fired at him by close aides;
  • He will accuse arch plotter Ed Balls of running a parallel Treasury operation while he was Chancellor;
  • He will say that Yvette Cooper, Balls' wife, was appointed to the Treasury team to keep an "eye on him";
  • The Times (£) says that 'Back from the Brink' will confirm speculation that Darling did threaten to resign at Brown's often impossible behaviour.

Tory Chairman Sayeeda Warsi issued a statement yesterday, focusing on Mr Darling's remarks about Ed Balls:

“Alistair Darling’s memoirs should give Ed Miliband some concerns about Ed Balls’ suitability to be shadow chancellor. Ed Balls recently claimed that he ‘did his politics on the record’, but he has already been shown to have been at the heart of the plot to oust Tony Blair. Now Alistair Darling accuses him of running a shadow treasury operation within his own government. No wonder Labour left the nation’s finances in such a mess when they put party political plotting above the national interest.”

Brown is not the only victim of Darling's pen. In words that will have people nodding across Westminster and Whitehall he describes Mervyn King, the Bank of England's Governor, as "amazingly stubborn and exasperating".

Labour Uncut has more advance material on the memoirs this morning; "Darling lashes “stupid” and “arrogant” bankers for taking Britain to the “brink of collapse”".