Talk about Newsnight

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Friday, 2 May, 2008

  • Newsnight
  • 2 May 08, 05:38 PM

"Gordon shouldn't smile - it looks unnatural"

gordon_brown203.jpgThat was the advice from one former minister last week. Today, he bravely attempted one, as he admitted to a 'night of disappointment'.
If ever there was a day our Mystery Cat would have preferred to be elsewhere, it was probably now. And indeed, if there was ever a day Labour colleagues would have preferred him to be elsewhere, it was probably now.

The local elections results in England and Wales show meltdown for Labour - with the party pushed into 3rd place. And as we await the results of the London Mayoral Race - the hottest ticket in town - might Ken kick that Mystery Cat where it hurts?
So what of the Boris and Ken race? Well as I write, rumours abound and fact is scarce - the counting is only half done.

Some commentators predict a landslide for Boris. Some predict we may not even know the results until after we go on air this evening. Significantly, no one has predicted a landslide victory for Ken but all that could change. We'll bring you the key players and the analysis right here.

And what of the Tories? A momentous night - with a projected share of the vote of an impressive 44%.

Tonight we'll ask whether this is the beginning of the serious climb back for the Conservatives. Could a win for Boris prefigure a win for David Cameron? Are voters in London 'trying out' Tory leadership to see what it feels like after all this time?

Michael Crick, David Grossman and Paul Mason will take us around the country, to Old Labour heartlands, new Tory and Lib Dem gains, and of course inside City Hall in London to gauge the political climate exactly 11 years to the day since Labour came to power.

Join us at 10.30pm on what has been a truly extraordinary day for British politics.

Prospects for Friday, 2 May

  • Newsnight
  • 2 May 08, 11:06 AM

Liz Gibbons is today's programme producer - here's her early email to the team.


So we have 40 minutes to fill, which shouldn't be too hard.

Michael Crick and Hugh are heading back from Bury to package in London - they will look at the extent of the Labour "meltdown" and differing views on how Brown can regain the initiative. If he can regain it at all that is.

David and Thea are at City Hall - they can package the events of the day, such as they are, editing at Milbank. But we won't get the mayoral result till late. Perhaps even later than 9pm. It looks like Boris will win.

Paul and Vara have gone to Nuneaton - a council which Labour held for 33 years until last night when they lost it to the Tories. Two BNP councillors also elected there last night. Cameron is due there mid-morning. Good place to gauge how grassroots Labour voters/middle England are feeling.

Do we need a Ken obit?

In terms of lives, the panel are on standby and we should be in a good position to get some top news-making interviews. Who with?

See you soon.


Bury lass goes to heaven

  • Newsnight
  • 2 May 08, 10:26 AM

During his report on the local elections in Bury last night, Newsnight's Political Editor Michael Crick recalled a rhyme about the town his grandmother used to tell him.

By popular demand - here it is:

I dreamt I was dead and to heaven did go,
Where did you come from? They wanted to know,
I said I'm from Bury,
And St Peter did stare,
He said step inside lass,
You're the first one from there.

Watch Michael's report here.

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