They're stuffed aren't they? They struggled in behind the Greens and the BNP. Lost their deposit. Lost 5,000 votes. Unless something utterly extraordinary happens, Labour are going to be swept away entirely from the majority of England. In Scotland they're rapidly losing ground to the SNP - even in Wales they're losing votes to Plaid and to the Lib Dems. They really don't seem to be many crumbs of comfort for Labour. One particularly bleak sign is that UKIP, traditionally the home of disaffected Tory voters, trailed in even behind Labour. When Labour say that they can't see any enthusiasm for the Tories they are clearly being Nelsonic.
As far as the Tories are concerned, there is better news: the Lib Dems do not appear to be picking up on any 'anti-Tory' vote. The tactical voting that has exagerrated every Tory reverse over the past 20 years has finally unwound. Indeed, it may have reversed itself. Under Gordon Brown Labour are headed for a shattering defeat. He is trapped in a narrative of despair and defeat, and lacks the capability to change it. A case in point is the difficulties the Tories are having over expenses. A few years ago - hell, a year ago - this would have been a classic 'same old Tories' story. Now? Where's the traction? The Tories are so clearly in the ascendant that the mud isn't sticking.
I'd say that the only hope for Labour is for Brown to go, but there is no-one to replace him. Miliband is being talked up left, right and centre, but if ever there was a man who lacked gravitas it is Miliband. Watching him gurn and squirm his way through interviews and Commons set-pieces, is painful. And who else is there? Brown is like a political Upas tree
- everything that shelters beneath him dies. Look at his cabinet - it's like the night of the living dead. Hell in a handcart, and it couldn't happen to a nicer fellow.
Labels: Brown, Labour, politics