British PM Gordon Brown to Go "Dirty Harry"?

| Thu Apr. 1, 2010 9:15 AM PDT

In an unbelievable political development in England, the Labour Party, which faces losing power in the next election, has decided to try to turn Prime Minister Gordon Brown's well-known volatility into an asset. The Guardian reports: 

In an audacious new election strategy, Labour is set to embrace Gordon Brown's reputation for anger and physical aggression, presenting the prime minister as a hard man, unafraid of confrontation, who is willing to take on David Cameron in "a bare-knuckle fistfight for the future of Britain", the Guardian has learned.

Following months of allegations about Brown's explosive outbursts and bullying, Downing Street will seize the initiative this week with a national billboard campaign portraying him as "a sort of Dirty Harry figure", in the words of a senior aide. One poster shows a glowering Brown alongside the caption "Step outside, posh boy," while another asks "Do you want some of this?"

Brown aides had worried that his reputation for volatility might torpedo Labour's hopes of re-election, but recent internal polls suggest that, on the contrary, stories of Brown's testosterone-fuelled eruptions have been almost entirely responsible for a recent recovery in the party's popularity. As a result, the aide said, Labour was "going all in", staking the election on the hope that voters will be drawn to an alpha-male personality who "is prepared to pummel, punch or even headbutt the British economy into a new era of jobs and prosperity".

Strategists are even understood to be considering engineering a high-profile incident of violence on the campaign trail....

It's quite amazing what some political strategists will do. Read the rest of the Guardian's incredible report here.

Get Mother Jones by Email - Free. Like what you're reading? Get the best of MoJo three times a week.