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Excessive use of Force by Steve Payne

Author says: what if sixteen stone ex-boxer John Prescott had punched that voter with his stronger right fist? Please note that the opinions expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect the views of the author(s).

In 2001, with just twenty-days remaining for William Hague's Tory Party to "save the pound", an undignified brawl at a campaign event in north Wales condemned the ruling Labour Party to unexpected defeat at the General Election.

The Deputy Labour Leader John Prescott had stepped off the so-called Prescott Express campaign bus at Rhyl where twenty-nine year old protestor Craig Evans hit him on the side of the face with an egg. Sixteen stone Prescott responding by hitting the egg-thrower with his right fist, knocking him out and breaking his jaw.

Despite having the appearance of a skinhead, William Hague (pictured, left) seized the opportunity to announce that it was not the policy of the Tory Party to strike innocent people, a ludicrous statement would return to haunt him in office just a few months later. A National Opinion Polls (NOP) survey found that the toe-curling footage of a "working class oaf" thumping a protestor shocked voters in Middle England. And even before Prescott had emerged from the Police Station, Tony Blair had already dismissed his deputy, refusing to accept the explanation that "John was just being John".

The troubles for Britain's political class had only just begun. Having made British sovereignty the burning platform the 2001 election, Wiliam Hague's Government soon faced a much more insidious threat than the abolition of sterling by the European Union. Because three months later, Hague was under pressure to support an angry American Government seeking revenge for the September 11th attacks. And less than willing partners would seen feel the effects of some hard-core arm-twisting.

It was a knee-jerk reaction with less intelligence than John Prescott's punch.

Author says original context and ideas have been repurposed from "The Prescott punch that changed history" by Michael White (published in the Guardian Newspaper), and Duncan Head on alternate-history at Yahoo Groups!

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Steve Payne

Editor of Today in Alternate History, a Daily Updating Blog of Important Events In History That Never Occurred Today. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Imagine what would be, if history had occurred a bit differently. Who says it didn't, somewhere? These fictional news items explore that possibility. Possibilities such as America becoming a Marxist superpower, aliens influencing human history in the 18th century and Teddy Roosevelt winning his 3rd term as president abound in this interesting fictional blog.


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