Having predicted for two years that Brown will survive to the general election, I did have a wobble last week when Blears self-destructed. All is back to normal now in the sense that Brown is on the rocks but secure in his hold as Labour leader.
The problem for the Labour rebels is that they have no candidate to challenge Brown. And even if they did, they would have to get over the hurdles which have been placed in the way in the rulebook which were specifically designed to prevent leadership challenges. It is also clear from the past week that the Rebel Alliance is a disorganized bunch who have failed to attract big names from the cabinet. With Darling, Milliband and Johnson staying loyal, Brown is safe.
What also holds it together for Brown is MAD - mutually assured destruction. Were Labour to dump Brown now, the demand for a general election would be all-consuming. And do you think Labour would want a general election in the current climate? Their one and only option is to hold on to the bitter end in the hope that the expenses scandal can be sorted and there is an upturn in the economy. Even then, there is no guarantee of improved Labour prospects. The economy recovered under John Major in the mid 1990s but the Conservatives went down to heavy defeat in 1997.
So whether Labour love him or loath him, they are stuck with Brown.
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