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Gordon Brown

February 7, 2009 | Henry Chu
Can "the Beeb" catch a beebing break? The broadcaster everyone in Britain loves -- and loves to hate -- is embroiled in yet another controversy, its third in just a few weeks. This time, the host of one of the British Broadcasting Corp.'s most popular TV shows has been lambasted for referring to Prime Minister Gordon Brown as a "one-eyed Scottish idiot." Brown has been blind in one eye since a rugby accident in his youth.
July 13, 2011 | By Henry Chu, Los Angeles Times
In a startling turn in Britain's phone-hacking scandal, former Prime Minister Gordon Brown on Tuesday accused Rupert Murdoch's newspapers of hiring "known criminals" to ferret out information on him and his family, including his personal finances and his infant son's medical history. The former British leader told the BBC that the decision by the tabloid the Sun in 2006 to publicize his younger son Fraser's diagnosis of cystic fibrosis, not long after Brown and his wife learned of it themselves, had left the couple "in tears.
March 3, 2009 | Henry Chu
Months ago, British Prime Minister Gordon Brown was promoted by admirers as the man to save the world from economic catastrophe. Now he has his hands full just trying to save his own job. Brown has come to Washington this week as head of a government saddled with economic indicators in free fall and poll numbers to match. Whether he can stop the rot with reflected glory from a president who enjoys rock-star status on this side of the Atlantic remains to be seen.
July 12, 2011 | By Henry Chu, Los Angeles Times
Embattled media magnate Rupert Murdoch's bid for control of Britain's biggest satellite broadcaster ran into further trouble Monday, even as new reports surfaced that a former prime minister and senior members of the royal family were possible targets of a phone-hacking campaign by journalists. Murdoch's long-running attempt to add satellite TV company BSkyB to his News Corp. media conglomerate faces several months of delay after the British government decided to refer the $12-billion bid to regulators charged with determining whether allowing ownership by Murdoch would violate anti-monopoly rules.
May 9, 2009 | Henry Chu
If foulmouthed, champagne-swilling Patsy from "Absolutely Fabulous" can shame and defeat your government, then is it time to throw in the towel? The answer from Britons of all stripes these days is an increasingly loud "yes" as Gordon Brown flails to stay afloat after possibly one of his worst fortnights as Britain's prime minister. There he was Wednesday in Parliament, looking as dark as a thundercloud as the opposition mercilessly baited him and brayed for his resignation.
March 6, 2010 | By Henry Chu
Don't blame me -- I was just the money- man. Those weren't his exact words, but it certainly seemed to be his message, and through hours of grilling Friday on why and how Britain signed up for the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, Gordon Brown largely stuck to it. It had a ring of logic. After all, Brown wasn't Britain's prime minister when the nation went to war in 2003; then, the distinction belonged to Tony Blair. Brown was chancellor of the exchequer, the fancy British title for head of the treasury.
October 7, 2007 | From Times Wire Reports
Prime Minister Gordon Brown ruled out calling an early election, ending weeks of speculation that he would soon seek a stronger mandate from the electorate. Brown, who succeeded Tony Blair in June, said he wanted his government to have time to show voters how it would transform public services and the economy. Opponents accused him of being afraid to face voters after a series of polls suggested his electoral lead was evaporating.
January 7, 2007 | From Times Wire Reports
The likely successor to British Prime Minister Tony Blair condemned Saddam Hussein's execution as deplorable. Treasury chief Gordon Brown said he opposed the death penalty and "now that we know the full picture of what happened, we can sum this up as a deplorable set of events." Brown's denunciation contrasted with Blair's silence on the issue. Blair faces increasing pressure to share his views on the execution of the former Iraqi leader and has said he will speak about it this week.
November 1, 2007 | From the Associated Press
He's gone to great lengths to shake off his once-dour image, but a trip to Springfield is a step too far for British Prime Minister Gordon Brown. He says he has no plans to follow predecessor Tony Blair in making a cameo appearance on Fox's "The Simpsons." Blair recorded a voice-over for "The Simpsons" in 2003, starring in an episode in which the Simpson family visited Britain.
October 4, 2008 | Henry Chu, Times Staff Writer
In a country that practically invented irony, Gordon Brown's return from the political dead should probably come as no surprise. The British prime minister, written off as finished just two weeks ago, has clawed his way back up the opinion polls, thanks to the financial crisis dragging down banks and stock markets worldwide. With Britain particularly hard hit, Brown is hammering on the theme that only he has the experience to prevent a calamity. Plenty of voters seem to be buying the argument.
September 26, 2010 | By Janet Stobart, Los Angeles Times
Britain's Labor Party chose the younger of two brothers as its new leader Saturday, selecting Ed Miliband over his older sibling to lead the party back from its electoral drubbing this spring after 13 years in power. Miliband, 40, who served as secretary for energy and climate change in the government of former Prime Minister Gordon Brown, is the youngest leader in Labor Party history. After three other rivals were eliminated, he defeated his brother, David, the former foreign secretary who until recently was considered the favorite, by slightly more than one percentage point in balloting on the eve of the party's annual conference.
May 12, 2010 | By Henry Chu, Los Angeles Times
David Cameron became Britain's new prime minister Tuesday as his Conservatives ended 13 years of Labor rule and entered into a surprising alliance with a smaller party that held the keys to his ascent. After five days of backroom negotiations that riveted Britain, the change of government — when it came — occurred with lightning speed. Outgoing Prime Minister Gordon Brown, seeing his own hopes for a coalition deal dashed, made a dignified departure from the official residence at 10 Downing St. to submit his resignation to Queen Elizabeth II at Buckingham Palace.
May 11, 2010 | By Henry Chu, Los Angeles Times
In a surprise move to try to keep the Conservatives out of power, British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said Monday that he would step down within the next few months and that his Labor Party would immediately begin formal talks with the Liberal Democrats about a possible alliance in government. It was a startling announcement from a dogged, moody leader who waited 10 years in Tony Blair's shadow to come to power, and who clung on through months of dismal approval ratings before being rejected at the polls Thursday.
May 4, 2010 | By Henry Chu, Los Angeles Times
Campaigning in Britain's most unpredictable election in years entered the homestretch Tuesday even as the nation began girding itself for a period of political uncertainty stemming from a potential stalemate in Parliament. The opposition Conservatives remain in the lead in the polls as they try to smash the Labor Party's 13-year grip on power. But there are increasing signs that no party is likely to emerge from Thursday's vote with a majority in the House of Commons, which would throw this country into murky political waters not seen here in more than 30 years.
April 16, 2010 | By Henry Chu, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
It was the dawn, one writer said, of "the American age in British politics." For the first time in this country's history, the candidates for prime minister squared off in televised debates Thursday, adding a bit of presidential-style zing to what is shaping up as the closest election in a generation. Election day is May 6. For 90 minutes, the three men in dark suits and white shirts made their pitches, live and uncensored, for why they deserved to lead the nation. They sparred over the economy, they talked tough on crime, they tried to outdo one another in their admiration for British soldiers in Afghanistan.
April 6, 2010 | By Henry Chu
Britain's worst-kept secret was officially let out of the bag Tuesday when Prime Minister Gordon Brown announced that much-anticipated national elections would take place May 6. The race is shaping up as the tightest in 18 years, and its outcome could be a rare "hung Parliament," in which no party commands a sufficiently decisive majority to form a government. Polls consistently show the opposition Conservatives leading Brown's ruling Labor Party, but the gap has narrowed significantly in recent months, making the contest too close to call.
July 2, 2007 | Janet Stobart and Marjorie Miller, Times Staff Writers
Prime Minister Gordon Brown's first days in office have been a baptism by fire, with three soldiers killed Thursday in Iraq, two car bombings foiled Friday in London and a fiery attack Saturday on Scotland's Glasgow Airport. On Sunday, he warned the British public that they faced "a long-term threat" from Islamist militants. Brown has indicated he will shift Britain away from his predecessor Tony Blair's whole-hearted support of the U.S.
July 31, 2007 | Maura Reynolds and Kim Murphy, Times Staff Writers
President Bush and Britain's new prime minister, Gordon Brown, emphasized Monday that their nations are united by shared values and a deep commitment to defeat global terrorism. But Brown also telegraphed his differences with the U.S. president over the issue, choosing to define the struggle as a fight against crime, instead of a war on terror, and calling Afghanistan, not Iraq, the front line.
March 14, 2010 | By Alex Massie
How unpopular is Gordon Brown? According to one Conservative member of Parliament, even "a monkey on a stick" could defeat the British prime minister in the forthcoming general election. Just one in four voters believes Brown has the "necessary character" to be prime minister, and his approval ratings remain so staggeringly low that even normally unflappable pollsters confess themselves astonished by the public's level of disdain for him. Nevertheless, come the May election, many Brits will hold their noses and vote for him anyway.
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