It is...important to distinguish between the fates of Labour andthe Democrats. New Labour has been in power uninterruptedly forthirteen years. The Democrats have only been in the majority inCongress for three years, and have had unified control of governmentfor a little more than a year. Brown’s government is responsible or isbeing held solely responsible for Britain’s fiscal and financial woes,to which Brown contributed as Chancellor under Blair, and Labour cannotpin any of this on its political opponents. Labour could have calledand then likely won a general election after Brown assumed theleadership in 2007. Had he done so then, Brown would not be in hiscurrent predicament. This is first and foremost evidence of the failureof Brown’s political leadership. What Barone cannot really show is thatLabour is suffering politically today because of a lack of “third way”political positioning or a lack of “centrism.” Were Blair still leadinghis party into another general election this year, there could be noquestion that the electorate was rejecting a relatively “centrist”Labour government.
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