Blair to put Europe at heart of election campaign

British Prime Minister Tony Blair to put Europe at heart of election campaign launch after Stockholm Summit

The Financial Times reports that British Prime Minister Tony Blair is gambling on the success of economic reforms at the Stockholm Summit allowing him to promote his policy of constructive engagement in the coming election campaign. His report to Parliament on the outcome of Stockholm on March 26 will allow him to challenge Conservative leader William Hague's view that Britain is being turned into a 'foreign land'. It is expected that he will call an election shortly after this debate.

It appears that Mr Blair is determined to stick to the widely predicted date of May 3 for a general election, despite speculation that a delay might occur due to the spread of foot and mouth disease. Choosing to focus on the benefits that EU membership brings to Britain when launching the election is an indicator of the confidence within the Labour party about the election result. The question is whether the Conservative's attempts to exploit popular opposition to the Euro will have a significant effect on the huge lead that the Labour party currently enjoys in the opinion polls.

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