Saturday, February 09, 2008

A Lib-Con pack BEFORE the next general election ?

The moves by Nick Clegg to suggest he is likely to support a minority Conservative administration may be more forced than he is letting on.

It may seem that he is just improving his negotiating hand with Gordon ( and he is ). After all if you have no alternative you're not going to negotiate a good deal.

But in may be that Nick Clegg's position is far weaker than is generally acknowledged since:

    1) The general public have had enough of Labour and especially Gordon Brown.
    2) The resurgent Conservative party is likely to decimate the current Lib Dem MPs.

Clegg may need a pact before an election to hold onto some of his MPs. Currently he can expect to lose at least half of them. Now were at the half way point in the parliament (roughly) he must be starting to think about a post election Lib Dem apocalypse.

Yes they want PR - but if they're all collecting their P45s then perhaps they won't have the hand to negotiate it with.

Hence the best time to negotiate is now - when your not too desperate.

Its just conjecture ... but we'll see...

Personally I don't think it would work as local Conservative associations who have been at the receiving end of the dubious electioneering tactics of the Lib Dems could well refuse orders from the centre to let them have a clear run.


Anonymous said...

The Lib Dems are certainly staring down the barrel at the moment. They can see that the Conservatives are doing very well in the polls and the predicted Lib Dem resurgence has not materialised.

I don't think Clegg can make a move before the election but it will take a miracle for them to keep even two-thirds of their seats.

Man in a Shed said...

YEs I agree. I watched Nick Clegg on the politics show on Sunday and I think he was cooler about the Conservatives than the newspapers suggest - but the reason for that is probably his party.

There was a well known pollster who said the Lib Dems should just admit to being a left wing party. Although I think he's wrong, I do think the vast majority of the Lib Dem membership think that way. ( Maybe - just maybe - some of their younger members are different ).

The problems for Clegg are:

1) Politically he is *far* closer to Cameron. He could have joined the Conservatives if he had understood them properly in the 80s. (He'll deny that - but the what else could he say ?)
2) The Lib Dems have always supported Labour at the national level. Many of the seats they hold are theirs because of tactical voting from Labour supporters. ( Only we can win here etc etc )
3) He needs to do a deal before an election - well before. He'll be forced to resign after one due to the destruction of his parliamentary party. ( They'll have to stop their annoying habit of pretending to be the shadow cabinet ).
4) His MPs who are about to get their P45s will become restless to the point of being unleadable in about 6 months to 1 year.

He has to act now.