Whatever you thought of the budget itself, Alistair Darling appeared to emerge from it with an enhanced reputation. Perhaps it's the contrast with his predecessor and boss. Perhaps it's the comparison with his Conservative opposite number. Whichever it is, the Observer's Andrew Rawnsley ponders the new-found potency of Labour's chancellor in his column here. He concludes:
Alistair Darling is one of the few politicians who can still command a degree of respect, not a negligible quality in an era when the political classes are held in such contempt by most of the public. Whether or not he is still chancellor in six weeks' time, his remarkable survival is a parable which other politicians might usefully ponder on. Especially the one who lives next door.