May 12th, 2010

Historic But Muted

It's not the outcome I wanted, or perhaps it is.  I voted Lib Dem in the knowledge that the best they could ever hope for was to form the junior part of a coalition. The truth is few of us were entirely sure what we wanted.

The contrasts with 1997 are stark. Blair was greeted in Downing Street by cheering crowds (of party workers who had been bussed in). There was none of that for Cameron. He arrived in the twilight, gave a short, dignified speech, nuzzled his wife and disappeared behind the shiny black door. 

Gordon Brown's last goodnight was quite extraordinarily sentimental. He told us how he loves his wife and family- and our brave soldiers too- then toddled off into history holding his youngest son by the hand.

I reserve my judgement on our new Government. Cameron has a pig of a job- and will probably fail,- sooner rather than later. One likely scenario is that his own backbenchers will bring him down. But for the time being there's this new thing in British politics (insofar as any of us can remember) an alliance of two tribes that viscerally hate one another.  I'm hoping it lasts long enough to bring in fixed term elections, repeal most of New Labour's repressive anti-terror legislation and throw ID cards out the window.