British PM Says Baby Doing Fine
May. 21, 2000
LONDON (AP) _ A tired-looking Prime Minister Tony Blair greeted churchgoers after mass at Westminster Cathedral on Sunday and told them his wife and new baby Leo were ``absolutely fine.''
Cherie Blair, 45, gave birth to the couple's fourth child in the early hours of Saturday morning, afterward returning to the prime minister's Downing Street home.
``No, it definitely wasn't a quiet night,'' Blair told parishioners after the service, which he attended with his elder children Euan, 16, Nicholas, 15, and Kathryn, 12.
Blair posed for pictures and told congregation members baby Leo was ``absolutely fine,'' and that Cherie Blair was ``great.''
``I'm feeling a little tired,'' Blair added.
In a statement released through Downing Street, Cherie Blair said she too was tired ``but full of joy.''
``It is so long since we had our other three children that I had forgotten quite what an ordeal those last few hours of labor can be,'' she said.
Cherie Blair, who spent the afternoon indoors with her family, said she was touched by the flowers and presents received from friends, colleagues and well-wishers.
Congratulations have poured in from around the world since she delivered their 6-pound, 12-ounce son at 12:25 am Saturday.
Danish Prime Minister Poal Nyrup Rasmussen was the latest dignitary to send flowers to Downing Street. Earlier, Queen Elizabeth II offered her congratulations as did Hillary Clinton, who telephoned Cherie Blair in the afternoon.
Blair, 46, is the first serving British prime minister to father a child since Lord John Russell's fourth son, George Gilbert William Russell, was born in 1848.
Despite heavy public hints from his wife, Blair has said he will not be taking parental leave. But he does plan initially to scale back his official workload.
The prime minister, who has described his new son as ``a gorgeous little boy,'' said it was the first time he had been present throughout the birth of any of his children.