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Blair ‘still determined to quit’

Tony Blair says he is not tempted to fight a fourth term as prime minister, despite a Newsnight poll suggesting a quarter of people want him to stay on.

  • Unfortunately I’m not sure Gordon has what it takes (in terms of charisma) to win the next election. I think us on the left, will look back at the Blair era as ‘steady progress’. If it hadn’t have been for Iraq (a big ‘if’ I know) and all the policy decisions linked to Iraq, then Blair would have a pretty good record.

  • Bob

    …. there is also his obsession with private sector delivery of public services, his latest moves to reinstate the grant maintained schools Labour had condemned, the most repressive set of measures introduced by a succession of Home Secretaries, the continued patronage in the House of Lords, and you cannot just mention Iraq as a throwaway.. it will be Blair’s legacy, every much as damaging as Thatcher’s poll tax. Not just the invasion, but the deception which persuaded those Labour MPs to vote for it. WMD, 45-minute warnings, and playing the same ‘security and patriotism that he is trying now to force through his latest attack on civil liberties. All the promise and genuine progress of these Labour years, will be broken on the ego of this man.

  • Hmmm, I see Neil is still living in that fantasy alternate Britain where Blair and his cronies and sycophants aren’t lying scumbags obsessed with money and celebrity. Meanwhile in the real world, the Blair years will be seen as having been utterly wasted – and his legacy will be one of lies and repression, damaging both to the Labour Party, and much more important to the political process in Britain.

    I wouldn’t worry about the Tories winning the next election – they’ll implode again. Neither David has what it takes. I do worry about Labour winning again.

  • Meanwhile in the real world, the Blair years will be seen as having been utterly wasted – and his legacy will be one of lies and repression, damaging both to the Labour Party, and much more important to the political process in Britain.

    Well, hey, let’s just not bother in future. If three election wins, a hard-won economic reputation, incredibly low unemployment and inflation, more money thrown at public services and our favourite causes than we could ever have dreamed possible, and so many social/equality measures, are worth trashing in favour of going back to ’94 and rolling the dice again, that’s tragic.

    I didn’t vote Blair in ’94 and have often found myself very far from his position, but the relentless, personalised trashing, and the elevation of his mistakes and character flaws into national tragedy is pretty nauseating. Everything would be perfect if it hadn’t been for him, or for his friends, or for his generation. That’s quite unhealthy.

    If I thought that what was in store after TB was a radical new set of reforming policies I’d be content, but I haven’t heard anything like that. What we will get is calls by those who have built a career out of being anti-Blair for a return to their failed 70s corporatist dreams; anti-Americanism; sitting on our hands on the international stage; and maybe rail nationalisation thrown to the activists to keep them purring.

  • I don’t know why you are so happy. When Milburn takes over, and I know this seems hard to see now, we are going to look back with a tinge of fondness for Blair

  • Bob

    If we only challenged Blair as often as HE treats the Party with contempt. I haven’t heard anyone arguing for a return to the ’70’s or isolation internationally. What I am opposed to is Blair’s determination to fulfill Thatcher’s legacy, and his ‘internationalism’ which consists of baring his backside for the US neocons.

  • If we only challenged Blair as often as HE treats the Party with contempt. I haven’t heard anyone arguing for a return to the ’70’s or isolation internationally. What I am opposed to is Blair’s determination to fulfill Thatcher’s legacy, and his ‘internationalism’ which consists of baring his backside for the US neocons.

    I would have retained some respect for the Labour Party if the members (and in particular the MPs) hadn’t meekly supported a leadership whose aim seems to be to retain power by out-Torying the Tories.

  • Is there anything the Labour Party can ever do that doesn’t involve us standing in the corner after 5 or 10 years, feeling ashamed for having won elections and made a difference to people’s lives at home and abroad? There’s always got to be a betrayal somewhere.