May 5th, 2005

Election Day

I think Blair will win. That's what the polls are all saying. People don't like him*, but they like Conservative leader Michael Howard even less. I was watching a programme last night where uncommitted voters were being monitored on their reactions to speeches by the party leaders. They found Blair persuasive (which he is, famously so) but almost all of them dismissed Howard as "negative". The Tory campaign has been all scare-mongering and Blair-bashing. I don't know how good the electorate's corporate memory is, but there must be quite a few of us who remember Howard's previous incarnation as one of the smarmiest, most cheaply populist ministers in the Thatcher and Major governments. There's a chance, a real chance, that this election will go down in history as the one that finally killed off the Conservative party.

Me? I won't vote Labour because of Iraq and there's no way I'm voting Conservative, which leaves me with the Liberal Democrats.  They don't have any chance of forming a government, but they might just beat the Conservatives into third place.

*A recent poll showed the British evenly divided: forty percent want Blair to encounter a speeding double-decker bus and forty percent want him stretched, scalded and quartered in the Tower of London (within a sampling margin of four percent).- Greg Palast