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Britain’s split verdict – the Conservatives have it, but not fully

Tony Blair must be having the last laugh; he was pushed out of the Labour party by a much less flamboyant personality, Gordon Brown; and now Gordon Brown has lost the election for the Labour Party, leading to the Conservatives becoming the leading party in the elections. There have been a number of factors that have contributed to the decline of the Labour Party, with the overall economic recession being one of the biggest contributory factors, as well as the unpopular wars in Iraq and Afghanistan (although it is a moot point whether the Conservative Government would have not sent armed forces to these 2 countries). Voters have voted with their feet towards the policies of the Labour Government in overcoming the recession, as well as their policies on many other areas such as Immigration (and feelings against immigration harden) when the economy starts dropping, when the impact of immigration on jobs and social security networks becomes more prominent.
However, the fractured mandate from this 2010 election is pushing Britain towards a new era (or rather a pushback to a previous era, since the last time that such a situation happened was in 1974 when a Labour Government finally took office). Britain, with this election, has moved away from the stage of a 2 party Parliament (with a majority leading party and an opposition that is also numerically strong), and moved to coalition politics where the leading party has to depend on a third party for MP’s, and where some policies of the government are dictated by coalition politics rather than being totally driven by the leading party.

The Conservatives have now taken the lead, but the strong electoral support for the Liberal Democrats (which did not get converted into too many seats, but enough for them to seem like a kingmaker) will lead to some time period of jockeying for power. Gordon Brown would not want to go into opposition, since the minute he loses power, he will face huge internal opposition in the party; but is stuck by the fact that currently the Liberal Democrats would not want to support a party that has lost the elections. However, supporting the Conservatives is not so easy since the policies are widely separate, and it will be distressing for both of them if they have to bring their policies to a common ground in a number of areas.
It would seem that the possible options are:
– Conservatives come to power with the support of the Liberal Democrats – People are not really looking upon this as a feasible arrangement because of the internal pressures
– Labour forms a Government with the support of the Liberal Democrats – this will still remain a minority Government
– Conservatives get outside support from the Liberal Democrats – will work for some time, but there will be many compromises that will be required
In all these cases, there will be a fear that a new election will be required soon to resolve these issues and come up with a new Parliament with new numbers.

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