Page last updated at 09:29 GMT, Wednesday, 30 September 2009 10:29 UK

Papers digest Brown party speech


Most front pages of the morning papers lead with Gordon Brown's address to the Labour conference.

The Sun's announcement that it is changing its allegiance to the Conservatives stands out, under the headline, "Labour's Lost It".

It explains its decision in an editorial on pages two and three.

"Nobody can doubt the dedication of Gordon Brown... But nor can they disguise the failures of Labour in government over the last 12 years," it says.

The Scottish editions of the Sun carries virtually the same front page but a different leader.

It is time for David Cameron to show what he will really do for Scotland, it says. "Scotland feels let down by Labour - but suspicion of the Tories runs way deeper."

Labour's fate

The Independent, under the headline "The Last Throw" says that the prime minister bolstered his position with a fighting speech.

The paper's Steve Richards says Labour's fate will be determined by the "strategy outlined in the speech, and not by the speech itself".

The Daily Telegraph also says the prime minister gave a combative speech.

He appeared to quash speculation that he could be ousted as party leader before the general election, it adds.

But in an editorial titled "Tired ideas from an exhausted party", the Telegraph says "the impression given by Mr Brown yesterday is that Labour is not even trying".

Challenge to Tories

The Daily Mirror's front page carries a picture of Sarah Brown introducing her husband's speech.

Under the headline "My man ..The man", it says Mrs Brown paid a tribute to her "heroic" husband as he inspired Labour with the speech of a lifetime.

The prime minister "admirably set out the choice that will face Britain at the general election" and "has finally thrown down the gauntlet" to the Tories, it says in an editorial.

The Financial Times says Mr Brown turned his back on a "bankrupt" free market ideology, attempting to mobilise Labour's core vote in an electioneering conference speech strewn with initiatives targeting middle England.

The Guardian says Mr Brown is good enough to fight the next election, but not good enough to win it.

In its view, he came across as a serious and experienced man who means well "but it is the country he needs to persuade".

'Empty chest'

The Times reports Mr Brown tried to revive his party with a defiant conference speech.

But it says he "failed to rise to the challenge" and suggested Labour would not make political progress under his leadership.

The Daily Mail also carries a picture of Sarah Brown introducing her husband to the conference on its front page but says the emotional tribute fails to hide the prime minister's "empty treasure chest".

The paper says the prime minister launched his election fightback with an extravagant pledge to spend Britain out of recession - without saying how he could afford to do so.

The Daily Express makes a similar point with its headline "Big dreams Brown... But who pays?"

It says Mr Brown did not explain how a raft of new measures highlighted in the speech would be financed.

"Yet again ruthless self-interest is being dressed up as principled change," it adds.

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