Deborah Mattinson was at the heart of Labour's polling organisation for many years. Indeed, she was Gordon Brown's personal pollster.
Today, the Sunday Times is serialising her book, TALKING TO A BRICK WALL, which my company, Biteback, is publishing next week. I'd love to send you a link to the feature online, but as you know, the Sunday Times now has a paywall.
The title of the book has a deliberate double meaning. The book's main message is that voters have been talking to a brick wall for years, but it could equally mean that Mattinson herself was talking to a brick wall called Gordon Brown.
The extract today centres on the election that never was in the autumn of 2007. Mattinson tells how Brown was indeed planning to hold a poll and describes the polling evidence that was used by his team to argue for it. She gives a revealing insight into the way Spencer Livermore, Brown's chief political adviser, was treated.
This is a not a kiss and tell book, although there are a lot of fascinating and very revealing anecdotes which tend to reinforce the conventional wisdom about the way Gordon Brown managed his government - if 'managed' is the right word. The book really does chart the rise and fall of New Labour through the eyes of a pollster.
The book is published tmorrow by Biteback in hardback, priced £17.99.
You can pre-order the book HERE.