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[personal profile] cheekbones3
I'm fascinated by Labour's decision to lock itself out of coalition with its most likely partner. I can't decide whether it's an idiot move which greatly increases the chances of a minority Tory government (either way, I think that becomes more likely), or a great move to risk that.

If not working with the SNP leaves us with a Tory minority, there's little danger the Tories could get anything through (even with another Lib Dem arrangement (is this likely again?), as the leftist bloc will have too much power and will be able to vote anything down - we end up with a bit of a stalemate. However, Miliband would have to be careful not to generate sympathy for the rightists by being seen as obstructive, but would need to balance that against working with them too much as well - that might not play well. Although, that opens the way for a very informal grand coalition-type arrangement, which I'd never considered at all likely.

Grand coalition? Hmm, until now, it hadn't struck me as something that anyone would consider, but I can see that after a year of bickering and not getting much done in a minority Tory government, the two largest parties are somewhat likely to see that they can work together to nullify the increasing influence of the smaller parties. This is also where the toryfication of Labour over the last two decades may come to its logical conclusion. Where Labour became more business-oriented, the Conservatives have become more socially-oriented as they realised that overtly crapping on the working classes wasn't a sustainable scenario, either financially or electorally.

However, if Labour do manage to be the largest party, then I reckon it becomes a very simple decision for them to form a minority government themselves, although they may need to bring in the Lib Dems in some capacity to nullify any Con-DUP-UKIP sort of grouping if the numbers don't look particularly helpful.

Regarding other factors, I do think that the incumbency of Cameron in #10, and the incumbency of Lib Dems and Scottish Labour politicians may temper some of the bigger swings on the day. Fine margins in many places though.

So, in summary, I reckon we're likely to get either a weak rightist minority govt or a strongish leftist minority govt, and in either case, the two largest parties will gradually realise that the establishment status quo may be supported best by them working together (although with grimaces and fingers crossed). Any obvious enthusiasm for such a lock-out arrangement could have unpredictable consequences in the 2020(?) election, although whether the public at large would like such stability or would run away screaming to the smaller parties, who knows?

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