They have to ask themselves the Peter Mandelson question, asked when Brown was being compared unfavourably with another younger Everyman in 1994: "Who will play best at the box office?" This time the choice is between Brown and David Miliband. The young pretender is growing in stature all the time and refreshingly normal. He must be the first Foreign Secretary to throw an American football (a gift from Stanford University on a recent visit with Condoleezza Rice) around his vast office.I must say I'd look forward to that. Mr Rentoul must have a strange idea of normality. If you wanted an archetype of the professional politics wonk, of Peter Oborne's 'political class', you couldn't do better than David Miliband. Someone more disconnected from ordinary working people I'd have thought would be hard to find.
I've noted the increasing triviality and shallowness of contemporary politics - how Mr Nice Cameron has put on the Boden chinos of that nice Tony Blair, how millions of young and not so young people love Mr Obama seemingly for little more than his skin colour (beige). Now apparently chucking a ball around the office is a good sign of premiership potential.
(Let us also remember Mr Miliband's tax avoidance)