Gordon Brown and John Smith furious at Tony Blair magazine cover: “For the love of shit” | United Kingdom | New

Tony Blair: Hunter recalls Smith’s reaction to the 1992 magazine cover

“Blair & Brown: The New Labor Revolution” traces the meteoric rise and difficult legacy left by New Labor under the leadership of MM. Blair and Brown. In the first episode of the series, the pair are young MPs with emerging reputations, determined to modernize Labor after the party suffered years of terrible electoral failure. Following Neil Kinnock’s resignation from his post as leader of the Labor Party following the party’s weak loss in the 1992 general election to Conservative leader John Major, Mr Smith was elected his successor in July 1992.

Mr Smith’s generally cautious approach to Labor reform, pejoratively referred to as “one more uprising”, sought to win the 1997 general election by avoiding controversy and capitalizing on the unpopularity of the Tories.

This frustrated modernizers like Mr. Blair who wanted a more proactive opposition party.

In the BBC documentary, it is revealed that Mr Blair caused an uproar within the Labor leadership after appearing on the cover of The Sunday Times Magazine with the headline ‘The Leader Labor Missed’.

Tony Blair’s research assistant Anji Hunter said: “Right after John Smith was elected leader of the Labor Party, The Sunday Times, a magazine, [had on its] front page cover – ‘The Leader Labor Missed’.

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Gordon Brown and John Smith were furious with Tony Blair after his magazine cover (Image: BBC)


Tony Blair’s research assistant Anji Hunter recalled John Smith’s folks’ anger (Image: BBC)

“I remember it because I remember the folks at John Smith calling me up saying ‘for the love of shit.’

“And Gordon, the people at Gordon weren’t very happy with that.”

Mr Blair was upset that his friend and political ally Mr Brown had failed to run for the Labor leadership in 1992 due to his close loyalty to Mr Smith.

This prompted him to take steps to become party leader and rebelliously ‘articulate a case’ for an eligible Labor Party.

John smith

John Smith died of a heart attack in 1994 (Image: Getty)

In the documentary, Tony Blair said, “It’s not that my respect for Gordon has been diminished at all.

“But I started, I guess, to feel that the change we needed was a change that I understood very clearly and I just thought ‘someone has to come out and articulate this case. “

Former Labor spin-doctor Peter Mandelson added: “It had a profound effect on Tony – he felt that if Gordon wasn’t ready to show up because he had already engaged with John Smith, he wouldn’t. maybe never would.

“And I think at that point the scenery changed in Tony’s head.”

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Peter Mandelson

Peter Mandelson exposed Gordon Brown’s “immense injury” after withdrawing from leadership race (Image: BBC)

Mr Blair, who had garnered huge popular support, would go on to win the 1994 Labor leadership election after Mr Smith died suddenly from a heart attack on May 12.

He convinced his friend Mr. Brown, who had been a rising star of the party, to step down from the leadership race and support his claim to leader in the interests of “party unity”.

Three years later, Mr Blair won the general election with an overwhelming majority of 179 seats, after introducing bold policies and constitutional change.

When Mr Brown resigned from the management to support his friend, Mr Mandelson said: “What Gordon suffered was a huge injury.

Blair and Brown

Mr Blair struck a deal with Mr Brown on Labor leadership (Image: Getty)

“At first he was incredulous but then almost inconsolable and he didn’t know who to trust.

“He didn’t know who his real friends were.

There has long been speculation that Mr Brown and Mr Blair struck a deal on the Labor leadership, which was confirmed in the documentary.

Mr Brown agreed not to run in the next leadership contest and in return, if Blair was made prime minister, he would stay in office for two terms before stepping down in favor of his ally.

Although he gave Mr Brown “personal assurance”, Mr Blair ran for a third term before stepping down in 2007 amid low approval ratings and the backlash from the Iraq war.

Mr Brown said: “Well it was simple and it was blunt and I’m surprised it was misunderstood.

“Basically it was that he would be chief and serve until the end, or almost until the end of a second term, so he was 10 if we could win the government and I would be in charge of the government. economic policy and I would get down to it. “

Mr Brown inherited the role of Prime Minister from Mr Blair in 2007 before losing the 2010 election.

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