But the election that never was was a turning point. It has been downhill ever since, and given that Labour were already down hill, that was quite an achievement.
Put yourself in the position of those Labour members who believed replacing Blair with Brown would solve all their problems. How depressed must they feel now?
I don't count on opponents to self destruct. They normally step back just in time from the precipice. But a party that has been in power for a long time under a dominant leader may be prone to internal ructions once the dominant leader had left the scene. That happened to the Tories after Thatcher left. Is the same happening to Labour now that Blair has gone? May be too early to say but all the symptoms are there.
The Tories managed to hold together long enough after Thatcher left to win (but only just) the 1992 election. There is a slightly different feel now with Labour. They seem to have gone along the same track much more quickly. After less than a year in office, the talk is very much about getting rid of Brown. We have seen the distraction caused in the Lib Dems when the agenda is dominated, rightly or wrongly, by questions about the leadership of the party. The Tories had it with Duncan Smith as well.
Too early to say whether Brown will be dumped and as he is the occupant of Downing St, and there is no obvious successor, removing him will not be easy for Labour. Time will tell how events turn out, but what is currently happening is clearly not what Labour had in mind when they knifed Blair.
I wrote this for my private diary but thought I would share it now.
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