Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Bigotgate

So: is this going to be like the time John Prescott punched the guy with the mullet in 2001? I remember thinking that he’d surely have to resign within the day, but that shows you how bad my instincts are.

Likewise the bullying allegations from earlier in the year: I thought they looked terribly damaging but they did Brown no harm in the polls.

That said, this looks to me more like the time* in 1987 when Neil Kinnock smeared excrement in the Queen Mother’s face and then kicked her until all her ribs were broken. That didn’t go down at all well in the marginals.

* Fictional

It’d be a funny turn of events for Brown to be ultimately destroyed by saying something that may well have been justified, given the woman’s remarks.

8 comments:

Liam Murray said...

Oh come on Tom - have you heard the full script of the original exchange?

She was actually making the point that 'you can't say anything about Eastern European immigrants' because it gets misconstrued. She was saying - in an ordinary voter sort of way - what many Labour ministers have been saying for a few years. Absolutely nothing racist or bigoted whatsoever...

What did she say that 'justified' his bigoted label?

Tom Freeman said...

Happy to admit I've not listened to it (at work, no headphones; I'm saving that treat for this evening, when I'm sure I'll be burying my head in my hands too). I've read the write-up, but perhaps the recording comes across differently.

But: nobody who says "you can't say anything about X", when many of the biggest-selling papers say exactly that every day, is anywhere near to being reasonable.

Tom Freeman said...

I also suspect that his classicly Brownian attempts to apologise and explain will do him as much damage as the initial remark itself.

Liam Murray said...

To be fair, the most bizarre element is that it was a very positive, starighforward chat. What on earth he considered to be a 'disaster' about it is the most troubling thing. It just endorses all the Rawnsley stuff about a weird, insular person uncomfortable with challenge...

Tom Freeman said...

I've listened to the whole thing now. Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear. Chances are she does have some unfair opinions about immigrants, but she simply didn't say anything like enough to merit a suggestion of bigotry.

Hopefully someone from the Labour party will now lock Brown in a cupboard for the rest of the campaign and they can put up a tub of lard to do the debate tomorrow.

Anonymous said...

Wow.

Why couldn't he have said she was misguided or something...?

Is it true she has a PR person now? Yikes.

info said...

It was funny that he blamed sue for it, like other people are at http://www.blamesue.com

Anonymous said...

Apparently, he Sue was his second apology of the day. Damn Mumsnet questions.