Saturday, 7 May 2011

This week's elections

Reading my twitter feed yesterday, Krishnan Guru Murthy from Channel Four News tweeted:

"News in 1 tweet: great for snp, good for tories, not good for labour, v bad for lib dems"

He summed things up pretty well, but here are my thoughts in a little more detail.

Lib Dems take a bashing

I’m beginning to feel a bit sorry for the Lib Dems. All those years of building up a local political base in towns and cities across the north, wiped out in a flash.

It’s like watching a boxer who’s on the ropes. They’re being battered by a barrage of punches - you just want the trainer to throw the towel in and put them out their misery.

Unfortunately for the Lib Dems I think the misery may continue for the next few years.

It looks like the Lib Dems are being punished by voters for helping to prop up the Tories. If they hadn't formed a coalition we would have got a minority Tory government which wouldn't have had much power and would have called another election, probably by now.

The Lib Dems argument for forming the coalition was that it was in the national interest to form a strong and effective government. I understand the logic behind that, but now they're being punished.

I actually voted Lib Dem for the first time last year. I knew there was going to be a hung parliament with the Tories likely to be the biggest party. I was quite happy to see the Lib Dems form a coalition as I thought they'd be a good counterweight to all your Tory rightwing idiots. I certainly don't feel betrayed by the Lib Dems.

The next few years are going to be tough and you get the impression that future relations with the Tories will be more business like and little more distant.


Not great for Labour

Pretty so so results for Labour and Ed Milliband.

I’m beginning to think that being in charge of a political party is like being a Premier League football manager.

Everyone wants instant results. You don’t get the chance to build a winning team over a number of years, you need to be challenging for honours straight away.

This is the problem Ed Milliband has. He’s not doing a bad job, but at the same time he’s not exactly setting the world alight either. Thursday’s results proved this.


Conservatives

They might not being showing it in public, but in private senior Tories must be laughing. The Lib Dems have taken all the flak for the government’s spending cuts and somehow they’ve managed to come out unscathed, with even more councillors. How have the Tories managed to pull this off. I can’t help but have some grudging respect for them.


A Big no to AV

I didn’t get a chance to vote in the referendum on AV. I discovered that Newham borough council had removed me from the electoral register, which I didn’t know about.

Despite my annoyance at being disenfranchised, I was pleased to see the No Campaign win, as I would have voted no as well.

It’s not that I’m against electoral reform, but I think the vote came at the wrong time, and the country needs a longer discussion on electoral reform. The public needs to be made more aware of the different electoral systems on offer and the pros and cons associated with each one.


What’s going on in Scotland?

I’m not going to try and pretend I’m an expert on Scottish politics as I’m not, but it seems for personality and political charisma nobody up there can touch the SNP leader Alex Salmond

Now that the SNP have full control, it'll be interesting to see how they deal with government cuts and less funding - they'll have nobody else to blame now they have a full majority.

As for Scottish independence, I keep hearing that despite the SNP's win most Scots don't want full independence.

It made me laugh when I heard David Cameron say he would be determined to see the union between England and Scotland remain.

As a Tory, you probably want Scotland to become independent. The Labour Party would find it almost impossible to win a general election ever again.


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