When he took power the opposition challenged Brown to seek his own mandate. It appears Brown is keeping it as a live option and for the opposition it may become a case of be careful what you wish for. It has been confirmed that a draft manifesto is to be ready for September. This follows the pre-Budget Treasury statement being brought forward from late November/early December to October, the new approach to the Queen’s speech and Brown telling backbench Labour MPs to use the summer break and after to get constituency organisations in shape. The latest polls have good news with Labour up to a 7% lead and Brown putting distance between him and Cameron. There are also two by-elections to test the waters. An early election would be before any wobbles in the housing market begin to pinch and also catch the opposition parties in the midst of their policy reviews. October/November 2007 and March 2008 are the two possible dates. Are the local parties ready for it?