A Sunday Times/YouGov poll (always one of the most accurate) has found that voters are hugely in favour of spending cuts rather than tax rises to close the growing gap between what the Treasury spends and what it receives in revenue. Sixty percent of people want the government to cut spending, taxes, and borrowing. Just 21% would like to see taxes rising to cover the borrowing gap.
One of them, of course is Derek Simpson, head of the Unite trade union. In an interview with the Daily Mirror he opined, in fine Old Labour style:
If you want to go down the New Labour route it is suicide.... New Labour is dead. It's like the parrot in Monty Python. Anybody who is going to take over and lead us down that path is taking us to certain defeat. But if you could convince me there is somebody who could take over and go down the Old Labour route without hesitation I'd share the view that if Gordon [Brown] is not prepared to do it he should stand aside and let that person do it.
I'd love to be a fly on the wall on Tuesday, when the Prime Minister makes a speech to the TUC Conference in Brighton, saying that there must be 'tough choices' (ie cuts) in public spending. But I think it is Gordon who is more likely to get swatted.