Party to a fall


A YouGov poll taken out between 27 and 29 May shows that Labour and Gordon Brown’s popularity has hit a record low since polling began. The Conservatives are ahead on 47 points, Labour on 23 points, with the Liberal Democrats on 18 points.

The poll showed that people regard David Cameron to be a better candidate for prime minister than Mr Brown and that the Conservatives would be better at running the economy than Labour. Crucially the poll shows that 72 per cent of those surveyed felt that the tax burden was too much.

Gordon Brown should take these results as a sharp slap from the electorate. A warning that if he does not cut taxes he will not only be defeated in 2010, but utterly trounced. His MPs know this. According to the Independent, a group of MPs (including five former ministers) have told him that he needs to cut taxes. As Sally Keeble, Labour MP for Northampton North, remarks: "The tax system provides the most powerful means of convincing this new electorate we're on their side."

However, even if Gordon Brown wanted to move to the right, he is being pulled in the opposite direction by the unions. The Labour Party is £24 million in debt. They have five weeks to find almost £7.5m or be declared bankrupt. A number of unions have promised to bail them out if their policies take a turn to the left.

It’s a catch 22 for Brown. Turn right and go bust, turn left and fail.