08 June 2009


One of the more ludicrous pieces of mythology doing the rounds at the moment - put about by a combination of Peter Mandelson and Nick Brown, no doubt - is that if the Labour party does get rid of Gordon Brown and replace him with a new leader, there will have to be an immediate general election.


There wasn't an immediate general election when Brown replaced Blair. And a leader who has undergone a leadership election (as there would presumably be, if Brown refused to go quietly) would actually have more legitimacy, not less.

For sure, there'll be pressure from the Tories for a general election: but there has been for the last eighteen months, at least. The new leader can ride it out. It's only twelve months until an election has to be called, after all. The new leader can, in that time, get on with the fundamental reforms that are necessary to save UK democracy. Proportional representation. Abolition of the House of Lords. Reform of MPs' expenses. All of these could be pushed through in a few months.

The Mandelson mantra that a change of leader would mean an immediate general election is pure bullshit. And I don't believe for one second that Brown would unilaterally dissolve Parliament and ask the Queen for an election, either. He's stubborn and deluded, but he's not malicious. That's just more scaremongering.

So come on you rebels, Do The Right Thing and don't fall for this baloney that the Dark Lord Peter is trying to foist on ya. If Labour MPs fail to oust Brown because of this kind of crapola, they will be stupid as well as spineless.

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