Gordon Brown Fights For Political Life

(Telegraph) – AS ISLANDERS GO TO THE POLLS, Gordon Brown faces a concerted attempt to force him from office as Labour MPs circulated an email letter calling for his resignation.

Draft e-mailThe drafting of the letter has left the Prime Minister fighting for his political future, with rebels claiming that as many as 50 Labour MPs were prepared to put their names to an email demanding that he step down.

Details of what party insiders described as an attempted ‘cyber coup’ emerged after his authority was dealt a potentially critical blow by the resignation of Hazel Blears, the Communities Secretary.

Amid signs that the election results  will be dismal for Labour, Lord Mandelson, the Business Secretary, has urged Labour MPs to stick with Mr Brown.

A YouGov poll for The Daily Telegraph today suggests that Labour could finish third in the European elections, behind the Tories and the UK Independence Party.

The poll puts the Tories on 26 per cent, UKIP on 18 per cent, and Labour on 16 per cent. The Liberal Democrats got 15 per cent.

Most council results will be declared on Friday, and the European elections will not declare until Sunday night, meaning it will be three more days before the full facts of Labour’s performance are known.

But some of Mr Brown’s critics are set to increase the pressure on him as soon as the polls close at 10pm tonight.

Lord Falconer, who was Tony Blair’s Lord Chancellor, told The Daily Telegraph yesterday that he supported Mr Brown ‘as we go into an election;’ but declined to say if his support would continue afterwards.

Several other senior Labour figures, from both the party’s left wing and the Blairite faction, are understood to be ready to voice public criticism of the Government’s performance once the polls close.

To shore up his position, Mr Brown has been calling backbench Labour MPs to canvass their opinions about the future of the party.

He is also planning a make-or-break reshuffle — possibly as early as tomorrow.

He is still considering replacing Alistair Darling, the Chancellor, with his close ally Ed Balls.

… (politics.co.uk, 04/06/2009) – The eye of the storm

… (04/06/2009) – James Purnell Quits The Cabinet

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