Rumours are rife at Westminster that James Purnell is preparing a coup to stab Gordon Brown in the back with a leadership challenge. Purnell has been touted as a possible leadership candidate for some time. In fact, in Tameside it has been murmured for a while, with a commenter on another blog named "Tameside VIP" (which is believed to be one of Purnell's assistants) to tip people off back in January:
"James has been invited to a very important conference where future leaders are decided. James will be attending this years conference in Ireland where his credentials will be discussed and the likely result will be that he is pencilled in as a future party leader and eventually prime minister. Place your bets folks while the odds are good. This is not a wind up."
But just before the Crewe and Nantwich by-election, the Spectator tipped James Purnell as "Labour's best hope" and ever since the disastrous results of the said by-election the media have gone into a frenzy over Purnell launching a leadership challenge to Gordon Brown as the true heir to Blair. I would even say that Purnell has been raking in more column inches than his closest rival, David Miliband.
All signs pointing to Purnell preparing himself to be the next PM. Purnell has now hired the help of Tony Blair's former speechwriter, Phil Collins. And on Guido Fawkes, it has been revealed that Collins recently wrote an article in a Labour house rag - Progress - slagging off Gordon Brown. Brown is said to be furious over Purnell's deception and has ordered Purnell to sack Collins.
And lets not forget Purnell practising his media handling with French TV. We think it was Purnell dipping his toe in the water in preparation of what is yet to come.
I personally think that Purnell would be a disaster as a PM. All he has done throughout his career as an MP is be a 'yes man' to reach the top of the ministerial ladder. The problem is with yes men is that when they do get to the top they have no one to say yes to, and that is where Purnell will crack. Purnell is undoubtedly Blair Mk 2, he does have the same charm and charisma as Blair, but we have yet to see Purnell handle a crisis. He has, however, managed to dodge bullets from the national press over matters which would be enough to finish any respectful "ahem" MP.
We couldn't care less whether Purnell would be good or not as a PM, in fact we would LOVE Purnell to be Prime Minister as it will be great to see this twerp fall from a very great height after losing the next general election.
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