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He's bottled out?

Then let the fun begin........

What? No autumn election? We need to hear it from the chicken's mouth (sorry, horse's beak) - poor Gordon seems just so mixed up now!

What a shame, I was getting quite excited. Even though we would've lost, the drama of Mr Brown possibly being in charge of a minority government would've been riveting!

Osborne & co have a lot of work to do now to ensure that our economic/tax policy cannot be smashed to pieces by labour spin in the coming months. Coulson needs to make sure we are constantly setting the agenda too. These past weeks have confirmed that the more the public see of us, the more they like, but when we disappear from the screens our poll ratings plummet. It will be quite a challenge I expect to keep us equal or ahead...

Are we absolutely certain of this?

If this correct, irrespective of the polling data, I think it was the ugly mood from the audience on Thursday's Question Time that will have persuaded Brown that the game is up for an Autumn election. That mood change was the tipping point. The Brown Brand has become contaminated. And he knows it.

Where has this come from?

If it's true I'm not surprised.

I'm very happy to say that my local MP now owes me a pint in my local. Given that I had undertaken to pay for the beer and distribute some election leaflets if an election was called in 2007, that will be:-

"Two pints, please, landlord - and no leaflets to take out. The lady over there is paying"

She knows who she is - and as I have absolute faith in her, I know she will pay up.

I don't think there is anyway that Brown can come out of this not looking like a calculating and scared politician; a man who thought he could win his own mandate but instead underestimated the Tories, and indeed the British people.

However, before I get too carried away, where has this information come from?

Just heard this on Five Live but read it here on ConHome first!!


Brown will apparently delay election until 2009.

Let us know if you need £10 contributions for your lunch with Ben, Tim. A delayed election is exactly what we needed.

This is just pure Tory arse. Absolutely made up. I've bet my house on June 2009 but hope Gordon lets us off the leash now to give Sham Cam and his No Note - No Votes speech the burial it deserves.

It is now on the BBC, I am happier that it is genuinely off now.

England Win the Rugby and Brown Runs Scared!!!
What a Great Afternoon

I'm happy to buy lunch Peter.

My mood has shifted significantly.

A few weeks ago I was sure that there would be an election and that we'd lose heavily.

Today we're back as a political force with good policies and Brown hugely diminished.

And, yes, Peter - we've beaten the Aussies!!!

Well done! You had it first at 1522.
Now on BBC and Sky, as well as Telegraph online.

If Brown tries to hang on and see out the rest of his unelected term the scale of Labour's eventual defeat will put them out of power for a generation. This was Gordon Brown's big chance but he blew it. The man has no guts and no sense.

The party has played a weak hand well.

Mercer has also leanrt his lesson.

But will Andrew Marr discover a spine and actually challenge Brown on this or will he do his usual love in with Labour?

Go on Marr surprise us.

Yes, Tim. Congrats on breaking this first! A big day for ConHome. I hope you're right, HF. Marr must really go for Brown but I doubt that he will.

I didn't see Nick Robinson on TV but his blog says that tomorrow's News of the World will show a "significant poll lead" for us.

let's hope we can continue to stick together now, and really hone these policies to explain them simply and memorably to the electorate. as DC implied - trea tthe elctorate with great respect and look for the common sense approach and answer. people are lovinbg this simple clarity.

Bugger. I think almost uniquely (?) I thought a November election would have been a fantastic thing for us.

Just laughing away at all these politico commentators on Sky News now coming on to say "of course he was never gonna call an election" -- och aye that's right, that's exactly what was all over the media last week.

Can't wait for PMQs on Wednesday though! Ha ha ha ha ha ha. You bottled it you bottling robotic psychopathic miserable loser.

What a coward. So what will the excuses be then? Postal strike combined with "I was never considering an election" I reckon!

Well played Tim and thanks to Gordon Brown. Layed 1.5 on betfair for no 2007 election during conference.

Nick Robinson added: "Mr Brown's opponents will make hay. They will say that he has bottled it."

"The only source of comfort for Labour politicians is that in the end this is about Westminster calculations and is not a decision that affects ordinary people's lives.

Please could someone educate Nick Robinson that elections do affect people's lives.

Some rapid (pre-prepared?) commentary by Matt D'Ancona for the Telegraph:

The whole point of Mr Brown is that he is meant to be square-jawed, implacable, remorseless, unstoppable. He is, after all, the author of a (very good) book entitled Courage.

Now it turns out that he might be what I gather in Scotland is called a “feartie”: a wuss, a girly-man, the Coward of the County (the county in this case being Fife, rather than somewhere in Texas as in the Kenny Rogers original).

The PM wanted to be seen as the mighty Father of the Nation, indomitable on his plinth, and succeeded to some extent in nurturing that image in his first few weeks in Number Ten.

But this farce has given the Tories the opportunity to change all that.

They will present him now as a man on the run from scrutiny and judgment: frightened of a leadership contest, frightened of an EU Referendum, frightened of an election.

"The party has played a weak hand well. Mercer has also leanrt his lesson." - HF (Oct 06, 2007 at 16:05). I am unimpressed. How has he learnt his lesson? Is his position really tenable?

I am not sure how true Conservatives at heart, or even Team Cameron, feel about Mercer and Bercow. Interesting comments heard at Blackpool....

Listerine, please!

I think we missed the other good news story!

Ming stays for another year at least!

Is it me or is the tide really changing this time?

Oh dear, what a loser. What was it Cameron said? If you treat the electorate like idiots you don't deserve to win an election (or even take part in one, apparently).

If we play this right, without going to over the top, we can wreck Brown's set-piece week of parliamentary events.

I'll believe it when I see it, Brown has been monumentally stupid in playing his cards if he is truly climbing down.
If this is true it must be the biggest scoop yet seen online!

Someone should do a poster with the tagline "Afraid of the verdict of the Citizen's Jury?"

"Please could someone educate Nick Robinson that elections do affect people's lives." - [James Burdett; Oct 06, 2007 at 16:20]

Some of us overheard Nick at the Imperial Hotel security checkpoint, and I can tell you he leans so much Labourwards that he makes the Tower of Pisa look absolutely upright!

Is it true that Brown's (is it Bunty) going to audition for the 'Chicken Run II (tm)'?

Chuckle chuckle

Ah well...we had a chance to get him now....but we also had a chance of not making it....let us use the extra time to make it certain.

Jennifer Wells. Adam Boulton just said this on Sky that Brown will make the statement “through a sympathetic interviewer”.

How can the BBC employ Marr in any political role?

The pundits are already tearing him to pieces on Sky and the BBC. This is very, very bad for him. Hurrah!

Amusing parallel with the Thomas the Tank Engine video that we posted earlier today.

Gordon tries to pull off a stunt and ends up in the ditch.

So there we have it, a promise to lower taxes lifts us in the polls and scares off GB.

So much for green issues!

Now we need to build and sustain this lead over time. Easier said than done. If the last 6 months have taught us anything it's that these poll leads are very fragile and we are one idiotic policy statement away from unpopularity and a snap poll we may not want.

"Today we're back as a political force with good policies and Brown hugely diminished.

And, yes, Peter - we've beaten the Aussies!!!"

Totally Agree Editor!

I think its time for some more alcoholic beverages to round off a successful afternoon.

I will try and pick up a News of The World on The Strand about 19.30.

Another quick note. Is the "psychologically flawed" nature of Brown really starting to show now?

Who would you want leading us in a crisis? This was Brown's strength a week ago. Cameron is now the man looking and acting like a statesman.

In 83 Marginals:
Conservative 44%
Labour 38%

Andrew Marr has just gone into Downing Street to interview Gordon Brown. Am I paying my TV licence fee to the BBC to act as a PR agent to Gordon Brown?

Why can't he come out on the doorstep to speak if he has something to say? This is live news, not a 20 minute summary of someone's life. Surely a recorded interviewat Downing Street on the day before Parliament opens is completely inappropriate.

And as far as Andrew Marr is concerned, he is the news reader that has now become part of the news. Won't trust him anymore.

CON 44% LAB 38%
Would unseat 49 labour MPs in Marginals.

Converted to general election: hung parliament

I knew it!! I knew that if Brown backed off he'd find something else to cite for his decision. The electoral register issues came along as the perfect excuse not to have an election for Brown. You can be damn sure that if the Conservative poll numbers hadn't improved that the 'minor detail' of a million potentially disenfranchised voters wouldn't have stopped an election from happening. Surprised the postal strike wasn't cited. Mind you, it was labour who expanded postal voting (and the potential for massive electoral fraud) in the first place. More labour diversionary tactics.

With Great Crash 2 about to break loose (the first big housing bust, Great Crash 1 was 1989-96)a lot sooner than the miracle man expected it is little wonder that he wants to make sure he has 2 years to savour in the top job before being ejected by a very angry electorate who are now drowning in debt due to his promise of an everlasting boom fueled by cheap and easy credit but not a bust. Good news for Cameron who had better put together some serious policies between now and 2009. He has been tacitly supporting Brown's HPI-MEW-BTL miracle and shares in the blame for not making a stand against it--too many vested interests in the party no doubt.

Apparently we have a 6% lead in the marginals which stopped it...

...AND we've won the Rugby - How good can it get?!!!

What's that Gordon? Never said there'd be one? No, but you sure as hell didn't say there wouldn't be. And it's for that reason you're going to be out of Downing St, and quite possibly Parliament within years.

Don't forget to let the door hit you on the way out! Toodles!

Can I have my £20 now, then?

I am just putting the shine on my ammunition boots.....though out of an abundance of lawyer's caution, I shall wait until the white flag is flying.

Firstly congratulations Mr Editor, great scoop for Conservativehome. The decision will backfire on the Prime Minister, his popularity can only go one way especially when the economy starts to turn over the next year or so.

It will be a great week in the commons for us - CSR on Tuesday with growth forecasts reduced, PMQ's on Wednesday which Mr Cameron should take full advantage of and then a debate on the European Constitution which will hugely embarass the government. Things are certainly starting to look for us, hope we can really make it count!

This is the most astounding political blunder of my 30 years in politics, Brown had us on the ropes but delayed and delayed and delayed.

The man is a serious politicaian but, just like Portillo, (in facy ABSOLUTELY like Portillo) he has no instinct about when to strike...

If he had called it on Sunday last week or even Tuesday during Cameron's speech the whole world would have been a different place.

A spectacular, epoch changing, government-wrecking blunder. He has completely blown it


The ITV News are now laying into Marr. “a pet broadcaster has been seen going into downing st to record the interview”

Remember Jim Callaghan in 1978, making a PM's broadcast to the effect that there would be no election when everyone had expected him to use it to confirm he would be calling one - and his song and dance routine "There was I, waiting at the church" at that year's Labour conference?

Any suggestions for a song that the Clunking Fist could sing from the Despatch Box next week? Slightly off the central theme, "Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word" might be a worthy choice.

Can I have my £20 now, then?

Is it just a coincidence that when the Tory Party start talking about tax, immigration, Europe, law and order they put the government on the back foot, to point of bottling out of an early general election? Labour were 11 points ahead in the polls a matter of days ago, David Cameron finally shows himself to be a conservative at the Party Conference and Brown is caught short in no time at all.

Please Mr Cameron ditch this metropolitan, eco-liberal rubbish and continue campaigning on issues that matter to real, ordinary people who suffer day in and day out as a result of this government. You've made your point about change within the Party - now turn everything you have on Brown and the Labour Party.

I agree wholeheartedly with the comments on here

Brown's bottled it, the momentum's with us - let's use it, make hay while the sun shines and build a solid poll lead that will ultimately carry us back into government in 2010

Jacob posted at 16:44: "I think its time for some more alcoholic beverages to round off a successful afternoon.

I will try and pick up a News of The World on The Strand about 19.30."

As it's now 19.44 I'm probably too late. But if Jacob holds any sort of public position in the party, with all that drink inside him I hope it IS only the News of the World he picks up on the Stand tonight...would not want him appearing in the next edition.

The activity on this site is enormous compared with "labourhome". I wonder why?

A good day. Things can only get better, and will.

However, we should not underestimate the gains we would have made in real seats in a real election on November 1 or even better November 8.

One of the problems we have had since about 1993 is that we looked like losers and we acted defensively like losers do. One day last week I suddenly realised that I was looking forward to the General Election which was going to be and I haven't felt like that since 1987.

We can now expect to see lots of rats swimming back to the Conservative ship. We should welcome them aboard but we must never forget that they are indeed rats.

Further to my previous post, labourhome have just 16 comments! Most are very p****d off!!

Why is the speculation that it'll be 2009 before the next election? Why not 2008?

If it's 2009 it gives lots of time for this matter to be forgotten and the serious issues come back into play. We'll get to see how good Gordon is at the real stuff: running a country.

Let's hope for that country that he'll be better than we expect him to be.

Apart from the Tory party, it's a good day for UKIP (saved from bankruptcy) and the Lib Dems (half their MPs given a stay of execution), not to mention Salmond (unfortunately) and Blair (who'll be having a damn good laugh).

Not that long ago labour had posters stating "Not flash-just Gordon"
Last week Amanda Platell came out with the rather good "Gorden's-no tonic". How about "Gorden's no tonic, no bottle!"

Yes Andrew Lillico you can have your £20. Tim has my email adddress and you can give me your details and I will send you a cheque. Otherwise nominate a charity and I'll send them the money and post you a receipt.As I've mentioned before I'm delighted to lose this bet.

To use the Lincolnshire expression once used by Margaret Thatcher of an opponent.."He's (Gordon Brown) frit"

I feel as though it is Christmas already. Are the electorate at last starting to see through Gord? Any delay must surely gvie us a better chance.

I think I must find my badge from the 1966 election which says 'Dont say Brown say hopeless' which referred to George Brown - at least he had a bit of character and apparently liked a drink so they say.

For the younger bloggers it was a play on words on 'Dont say Brown say Hovis'.

Could these badges now make a comeback?! Doesn't it make you cringe listening to Brown saying he has delayed the election so the public can see his vision for the future. What a load of b......s

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