Britain does not want Blair back

By Georgie Keate

The popularity of the Labour party would slip three per cent if Blair returned as leader, a poll has revealed.

A Guardian/ICM poll has shown that support for the opposition party would decrease from 39% to 36% if Blair staged his comeback.

The figures come straight after the former prime minister gave an interview to the Daily Telegraph declaring Britain must not "hang bankers at the end of the street".

In a move that suggests Blair might be out of touch with the public's current sentiments, he praised Thatcher's free market liberalism and warned against going "back to the State running everything".

The comment is seen as a direct warning to Ed Miliband who favours breaking up the banks and tougher regulation.

In an interview with Sky News on Sunday, Blair also admitted Labour did not "understand' the banking sector which contributed to the meltdown of 2008.

"Everybody who was in power in the period bears a certain responsibility," he admitted.

Blair has caused a stir in UK politics in recent weeks by hinting in interviews about a return to Westminster.

When asked if he might be staging a comeback for 2015, he said: "I have got things to say and if people want to listen, that's great, and if they don't, fine."

However, the poll suggests that the public are not so keen to listen and would flock to support the Lib Dems if Blair returned leaving Labour on 36%, the Conservatives on 34% and the Lib Dems on 15%.