Friday, May 05, 2006

Reflections on the elections

Not from me but two other bloggers making observations that, to me anyway, point to the same conclusion - that the next General Election will be a straight fight between Labour and Conservatives, with the Liberals showing themselves to be the party whose star has passed.

Sunny points out that the Tories performed "the least disappointingly out of everyone" - of no insignificance in this weird age where European elections seem to produce only losers, and that this is perhaps best represented by the Tories' victory in Ealing.

Lenin, with a phrase that rang true, described the 'Cameron effect' as "obviously working with a certain kind of middle class conservative who might previously have been embarrassed by the Tory right's xenophobia."

This I think has certainly been the pattern in Scotland: the Liberal Democrats have up here benefited from the votes of people who are to all intents and purposes conservatives but are turned off with Tory rhetoric about too much overcrowding and immigration - on the simple grounds that up here no-one seriously believes that we are either overcrowded or have too many immigrants.

While these themes obviously resonate more south of the border, it remains the case that the Lib Dems, as well as receiving votes from opponents of the Iraq war, also picked up a fair number of liberal conservatives put off by the 'Blood and Soil-lite' vibe of the Hague years. Superficial he may be, but Cameron does not alienate this significant constituency where the followers of Tebbit clearly did.

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