Blair back on campaign trail

By Sabine Klensch

Tony Blair returns to front-line electioneering today as he is deployed to campaign for Labour today.

The outing comes as the former prime minister faced questions over one of his charities.

Mr Blair is trying to shore up Labour’s vote as it trails third in the polls with less than a week to polling day.

“Labour will succeed best if the focus is on policy,” he said.

“That’s where we’re strong.”

He is appearing in constituencies in the south east of England today, where he had great appeal to floating voters through his three election victories.

Mr Blair is not expected to be appearing with Gordon Brown, who will be campaigning in the Midlands after the party’s poster launch in Birmingham

Commentators say Mr Blair’s re-appearance is a gamble as Labour seeks to rejuvenate its struggling campaign; he remains a divisive figure following his leadership of Britain into a war in Iraq.

Mr Blair spoke in support of Mr Brown just before the official start of the campaign at Trimdon Labour club.

Meanwhile, the Charity Commission is currently assessing the complaints against the Tony Blair Governance Initiative, but is keen to point out it is not formerly investigating the matter.

“Commission is currently assessing these to see what role, if any, there may be for the Commission in this matter,” a spokesman said.

“Please note that this does not mean that we are investigating this charity, rather that we are currently assessing the specific issue raised.”