Labour, sick of Gordon, turns to Elvis

By staff

A Labour rally on the NHS was the first opportunity for Gordon Brown to show whether he has taken calls for him to rejuvenate his campaigning style on board.

The prime minister appeared at a Labour rally in Northamptonshire on Labour’s plans for the NHS and public services.

He had been reported by the BBC to be planning to take a more active role in the campaign. Some party members are understood to be concerned at what they call a lack of urgency in the campaign and there are fears that Labour may come third in the popular vote.

There were no discernible differences to Mr Brown’s style, although observers say the frequency of the colloquial “y’know” which litters his stump speeches is reaching alarmingly high levels.

Rumours had abounded that the rally today would feature an appearance by a major celebrity. Alastair Campbell was quoted by the corporation as saying: “We are talking big. I mean mega. Could be highlight of campaign,” and that the visiting dignitary is one of his, and also John Lennon’s, heroes.

The super-celebrity turned out to be an Elvis impersonator. “For those of you who don’t know who I am, I’m Piers Morgan. No – I’m just kidding,” the King said, after bounding around bewildered Labour supporters singing A Little Less Conversation.

Mr Brown said earlier: “I think there’s only about four per cent of people believe that Elvis is still alive, and I think by the end of this election there are only four per cent of people who don’t believe the Conservatives are a risk to the economic recovery of this country.”

Meanwhile Conservative leader David Cameron appeared at a party event in Essex.

He outlined his party’s plans for electoral reform, including a law which will force an incoming prime minister who was not party leader at a general election – like Gordon Brown and Tory PM John Major – to call an election within six months of taking office.

Later he is attending his sister’s wedding.

The Liberal Democrats’ Nick Clegg is at home, and not campaigning, spending his first day in three weeks with his three young children who have been stranded in Spain with his wife Miriam Gonzalez Durantez’s family.