Magazine article New Statesman (1996)

Don't Believe It

Magazine article New Statesman (1996)

Don't Believe It

Article excerpt

"Our policy on the euro has not changed"

Tony Blair told the Confederation of British Industry, despite what the press had written the day before, that the government's policy on the euro hadn't changed "an iota". Changed from what? From the agreed official government line as spelled out the previous evening by my old boss Gordon Brown, or from Blair's new line as spelled out in his Brighton sermon?

I couldn't see the steam coming out of the Chancellor's ears as Blair told the party faithful that it was time for a crusade in favour of the euro, but he looked as grumpy as I've ever seen him. Brown is not normally a very patient man, but he wisely kept a lid on his feelings until the CBI conference, when he got his revenge. In a typically downbeat way, he made it clear that the decision on the euro would be an economic one - in other words, his. Just in case the hacks hadn't got the message, his adviser Ed Balls was on hand to explain exactly what he meant, and the difference between No 11 and No 10 was duly reported. …

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