|Prime Minister of the United Kingdom|
January 18, 1963 - February 14, 1963
|Preceded by:||Hugh Gaitskell|
|Succeded by:||Harold Wilson|
|Deputy Prime Minister of the United Kingdom|
July 16, 1960 - March 15, 1968
|Preceded by:||Aneurin Bevan|
|Succeded by:||Barbara Castle|
1960 - 19621966 - 1968
Patrick Gordon Walker
September 2 1914, London
|Died||June 2 1985, Truro, Cornwall|
George Brown was a British politician who at various times held the offices of Foreign Secretary, Deputy Prime Minister and for a month, Prime Minister. Brown was elected MP for Belper in 1945. In 1959 he was made Defence Secretary by Gaitskell, but in March 1960 following the resignation of Nye Bevan, Brown was appointed Foreign Secretary. At the Foreign Office Brown continued the decolonisation policies of Bevan.
In 1962 he swapped jobs (against his wishes) with Home Secretary Patrick Gordon Walker. He was Home Secretary for just over a year.
Following the death of Nye Bevan, Brown was elected Deputy leader of the labour party, and was appointed Deputy Prime Minister by Gaitskell. This move was seen as an insult by many on the left of the party.
On the evening January 18th 1963 Gaitskell died after a short illness. This came as a shock to many, particularly Brown, who was unsure of the exact constitutional situation. Rather than call a cabinet meeting, Brown headed for Buckingham Palace, and at 11:00pm he kissed hands as Prime Minister.
This move outraged many on the left of the party, as his incumbency was seen as a serious advantage in the upcoming leadership election. It was not until the afternoon of January 19th that Brown held his first cabinet, and announced that the leadership election would occur on February 14th. Brown, Wilson and Callaghan, who had been seen as the only realistic leadership contenders, all agreed to a clean fight. This was seen as a disadvantage to Brown.
Brown thought that he would win the leadership election, he counted upon the support of leading Gaitskellites, Roy Jenkins, Denis Healey and Tony Crosland. However many of the younger Gaitskellites warmed much more to Callaghan, and the left of the party were already clearly for Wilson.
Brown's brief period in office was relatively unmemorable except for a few instances.
He was appointed to the newly established department of economic affairs, as well as being reappointed Deputy Prime Minister.