John Rentoul points out in a typically sharp column in today’s Independent that Gordon Brown has benefited from the low expectation surrounding his arrival at Number 10. There had been so much said about Brown’s weaknesses that the commentariat had almost forgotten about his strengths and totally underestimated how adept Brown would prove at turning "his pathologies into assets.”
However, the tide may have turned with the poll that put Brown ten points ahead. It has become a benchmark that subsequent polls are being measured against. So, today’s poll which shows Labour up by five—which is not bad, considering that the Tories were leading by five in the same poll at the end of May—is being treated as a bit of blow for Brown. The Guardian’s headline is the rather negative, “Poll warning to Brown over October election gamble.”
Now, if Brown decides against an autumn poll—which I doubt he was ever really planning on—a new narrative might emerge that Brown is on the back foot and the big mo is with Cameron.