I don’t give this alliance of the deluded more than two years
So Nick Clegg, the leader of the party that lost in more constituencies than any other, is now set to be our Deputy Prime Minister. That’s not very proportional, is it?
Mind you I’m pleased that the nonsense of a Rainbow Coalition has been kicked into touch, as it was always a non-starter. The only coalition between Labour and the Lib Dems should have been one designed to establish how they work together in opposition to minimise the damage the Tories will try to do to the weak, poor and vunerable. Now a whole raft of dreadful Conservative policies will have Lib Dem fingerprints all over them. At least Labour will have clean hands and can look forward to an early general election with some relish, as I don’t give this alliance of the deluded more than two years.
There will be some squeaky bums on the Liberal benches as they realise what they have done. This is not a party prepared for or capable of government, with the single exception of the excellent Vince Cable. Clegg has ripped up the agreement that Lib Dem MPs made only a few days ago not to accept ministerial posts but only to try and work out a shared agenda. Many years ago, a Lib Dem council leader told me that trying to get all his colleagues facing in the same direction was akin to “herding cats”. Now the cat-herders are in government.
It would be churlish, however, not to acknowledge the qualities of the three main players in these last five days of political drama. Cameron, since his election as party leader four and a half years ago, has overseen a remarkabe turnaround in Conservative fortunes. Clegg has played a blinder in the inter-party negotiations and found his voice in the televised leaders’ debates, although this failed to translate into seats for the Lib Dems. Brown made a dignified exit and can take comfort from an election performance that exceeded expectations, although he did acknowledge his own role in Labour’s demise.
But let us save our last thoughts for the political geniuses over at The Guardian. Was this the “epoch-changing” coalition they had in mind when they encouraged their readers to vote Lib Dem, thereby putting David Cameron in Number 10?