No safe haven for the PM
It's a defeat which changes everything and yet also changes nothing.
The voters of Glasgow East have proved beyond any doubt that there is now no safe haven for Gordon Brown from the winds of political change. Even in a so-called heartland area, even in an area of poverty and deprivation, even in Scotland, voters turned out to give him and his government a kicking.
So far, there's been a call for a leadership contest but no significant figure has called for Gordon Brown to go. Indeed he's been backed by some formerly strident critics.
Though many in Labour - from the bottom of the party to the very top of the cabinet - have reached the conclusion they'd be better off without Mr Brown - they have also concluded that removing him could look recklessly indulgent, would certainly be bloody and would lead to demands for a swift general election the party would almost certainly lose. Thus, a challenge is likely to require another trigger.
This should give Gordon Brown time at his party conference, and in the run-up to it, to unveil more of the help he is promising for so-called "hard pressed families" and to warn, as he did today, of the risks to them of a Tory government.
The prime minister urged his party to be confident. They may soon demand some proof that he's not a man simply shouting at the wind.