So could there be an October coup?

So could there be an October coup?


What do we think of Kettle’s Friday column?

If you thought that all the issues over the Labour leadership are now history and that Brown will lead the party into the next election then check out Martin Kettle in the Guardian.

He writes:“….An active network of MPs and peers now exists, involving some names you might expect, but also others – including big ones – whose participation would surprise you. This group, like probably the majority of Labour MPs, accepts that Brown is a liability to his party’s election prospects. Unlike the majority, though, they claim to think something can be done about it. They believe the window of opportunity, if it comes, will be in the two or three weeks after October 12. If Brown can be pushed, then this is the time. They say they are ready to try….

….Will any of this happen? History, both of Labour in general and of the plots against Brown in particular, suggests it will not. People who are often right take this view. But history, as Simon Jenkins wrote the other day, never repeats itself. Perhaps this time history will be turned on its head. The first October revolution brought one Great Leader to power. The next one may usher this Great Leader out of the door. Brown is not safe yet. Remember the date.”

It will be recalled, of course, that the Tories got rid of IDS at the end of October 2003.

We’ve heard all this about Brown before of course and I’ve argued for the past couple of years that the decision of PLP to give Brown his coronation 2007 was an an of self-destructive lunacy. But the Labour movement seems totally unable to to make the move that would, in my view, save some seats at the general election.

As I’ve been noting for a week or two I’m keeping out of the commons spread markets at the moment because all could change in the next few weeks.

Kettle, it should be noted, is a long-standing Brown-sceptic.

Mike Smithson

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