Across the Pond

Gordon Brown Denies Pill Rumors

In an interview with the BBC, embattled British Prime Minister Gordon Brown vehemently denied recent rumors of an alleged dependence on prescription painkillers. The charge comes after a long downturn in Brown’s popularity, and the prime minister also used the interview to address pet political issues in preparation for next year’s election. Brown did a political about-face regarding the economy, speaking of his desire to crack down on banks after having a “change of heart” at this week’s G-20 summit. “The banks are anxious to return to the bad old days,” said Brown, vowing to combat wayward financiers with "the toughest action of any country in the world.” Shifting the focus away from his critics, Brown sought to highlight the slowing growth of unemployment and position himself as an effective leader: "I’ve had to fight through all kinds of difficulties. A setback can either be a challenge or you roll over. I do not roll over."