The British Prime Minister Gordon Brown has been patching up morale in his party once more, after Labour suffered yet another spectacular by-election defeat.
Voters in Glasgow-East switched to the Scottish Nationalists after a lifetime of Labour.
Brown blamed world economics, saying: “Yes, we understand the people’s concerns. Yes, we know that in every country of the world people are going through a difficult time at the moment. But we should be proud that the Labour party will lead the debate throughout the whole world about how we can reduce our dependence on oil; about how we can have a more environmentally sustainable economy.”
If the swing of 22.5 per cent away from Labour were repeated nationally, even Gordon Brown might lose his seat.
The opposition leader, David Cameron called for an early general election.
“Whenever people have had a chance to speak about this government, whether at the local elections; in Crewe; in Henley; in the London Mayoral election and now in Glasgow, they’ve said, ‘Look, we think you’re failing and we want change.’ I think the Prime Minister should have his holiday, but then we need an election,” he said.
At the end of May the PM’s popularity ratings were the worst ever.
This latest vote is not just a political punch for Brown. Having been born in Glasgow, it is a personal kick in the teeth too.