Broon has gone, for good this time, unlike yesterday’s fake resignation. He appears to have achieved one thing: yesterday’s last-gasp offer to the LD appears to have forced the Tories to offer a referendum on AV.
However, it wasn’t enough to tempt the LD’s to him, and his own party was iffy, and it wouldn’t have been a majority. So today he said “bugger this for a game of soldiers” and pissed off. Only he wrapped it up in a dignified speech.
My own keyinsight (hexapodia!) is so-far unarticulated by anyone else, and is hidden over the fold.
OK, so I think that this is Broon’s last piece of tribal politics and his parting attempt to foul up the prospective Tory-LD alliance. In that: everyone was expecting him to hang around politely waiting for them to finalise whatever discussions they were having, or to admit they were getting nowhere. But now all of a sudden they will have to do something. Mrs Qween will be inviting that nice Cameron to the Palace very soon now, and saying “can you form a government?” and he needs to have an answer. Will it be “Yes” or will it be “maybe, but a minority” or will it be “we’re still talking”? Broon is presumably hoping that by forcing them to declare now, they may make a mistake.
Like me, writing this post far too quickly :-).
What should the LD’s do? I think they have to take the referendum on AV, weak though that is, and as much government as they can get. They won’t get their heart’s desire – proper PR – so they’ll need to keep aiming for that in the future. Which means trying to look as though they can (help) govern the country responsibly and more seats next time. Of course the upcoming govt is a poisonned chalice: it has to deal with the “austerity” that is ahead, and will either do it and be hated by the people that suffer, or won’t and will look economically incompetent. There remains the possibility of doing it well – firing all of Ofsted would get my vote – but I’ve seen no real signs that is likely.
[Update: from the BBC coverage – Cameron was at prep skool with Prince Edward. Also, having just checked the Tory and LibDem webpages for news – they are rubbish
Moah: listening to Cameron, and reading his brief speech, it is clear that things aren’t worked out: I aim to form a proper and full coalition between the Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats. I believe that is the right way to provide this country with the strong, the stable, the good and decent government that I think we need so badly. Nick Clegg and I are both political leaders who want to put aside party differences and work hard for the common good and for the national interest… promises nothing. This is an aim, or as the Balirites notoriously said, that wasn’t a commitment, it was an aspiration. Cameron may have the best of intentions, or maybe not.
Aside: Cameron is the first PM we’ve had who is younger than me. Don’t those politicians look young nowadays?
Also: live updates here]