Gavin Maclure's Musings

My take on politics locally, nationally and internationally

Is the Coalition about to implode?


Never mind Bashar al-Assad using the London Olympics to do some violent acts whilst the world is looking the other way, it seems Prime Minister David Cameron has mortared the Lords Reform Bill the Liberal Democrats so desperately wanted to ensure they held the balance of power ad infinitum in the upper chamber at Westminster. And Nick Clegg didn’t wait long to retaliate, firing a volley of missiles about “broken agreements” at a press conference this afternoon.

There have been spats before between the Tories and the Yellow Peril, most noticeably on Cameron’s faux Treaty veto last year in Brussels but usually Clegg just sulks in his office rather than come and sit next to the PM in the House of Commons. But since Parliament is in a recess this form of attack can’t be used so Mr Clegg has hit the airwaves to say the scrapping of the pointless Lords Reform Bill “breaks (the) Coalition contract”.
Fine, so when are you going to leave the ministerial limos and grace and favour houses and head back to perpetual Opposition Mr Clegg? Today sounds like a good time. After all, come 2015 your party will be annihilated. 
Clegg continued at his press conference to tell the Tories they can get stuffed on the forthcoming boundary review legislation, which would see constituency boundaries re-drawn and the number of MPs decreased. This would redress the balance of power at the next General Election ensuring Labour do not have an unfair advantage (as they do now) over the Conservatives. The Lib Dem leader has announced his party will not support this legislation as retribution for the Lords Reform being scrapped.
The Lib Dem leader should check his copy of the Coalition Agreement and Section 23 on Boundary Reviews in particular:

We will bring forward a Referendum Bill on electoral reform, which includes provision for
the introduction of the Alternative Vote in the event of a positive result in the referendum, as well as for the creation of fewer and more equal sized constituencies. We will whip both Parliamentary parties in both Houses to support a simple majority referendum on the Alternative Vote, without prejudice to the positions parties will take during such a referendum.

The Boundary Review had nothing to do with House of Lords reform. It was linked to the AV referendum which the Liberal Democrats were given (and lost) last year.
As Cameron should have done in May 2010, we now need to form a Minority Government and go to the country say on November 15th when the Police Commissioner elections take place and when funnily enough Louise Mensch’s seat is scheduled to have its by-election.
It’s not as if the economy has improved under a Coalition Government – quite the opposite. Time for Cameron and Clegg to act in the “national interest” and give the country a chance to elect a strong single party Government again.

Author: gavinmaclure

IT professional; political blogger, former Conservative councillor

2 thoughts on “Is the Coalition about to implode?

  1. Which is very likely going to be Labour, with possibly support from the Nationalists.

  2. Very interesting tweet earlier by Lib Dem Mike Smithson, a psephologist listened to by many psephologists! He said, and he's right, that the Lib Dems backing out of Boundary Changes will cost the Tories 20 seats in 2015. The fact that Labour could be 4% behind and still win an overall majority shows just how warped these boundaries are.How is it fair for voters in Ipswich to have more power than those in Central Suffolk and North Ipswich?One interesting comment though Gavin – the comments by Nick Clegg in an internal email sent to Lib Dem members: "In my discussions with the Labour Party leadership, they have made it clear that while they continue to back Lords reform in principle, they are set on blocking it in practice. Supporting the ends, but – when push comes to shove – obstructing the means."I invited Ed Miliband to propose the number of days that Labour believe is necessary for consideration of the Bill. He declined to do so."Instead he confirmed Labour would only support individual closure motions – which could bog down Parliament for months."Regrettably Labour is allowing short-term political opportunism to thwart long-term democratic change."Labour are hoping that the natural distaste of Tories for Lib Dems will tear the coalition apart. Surely all Tories realise that going for a supply and confidence agreement now won't allow them to get any of their agenda delivered, and a General Election now would see Ed Miliband in Number 10 and Ed Balls (or Vince Cable) in Number 11. The country simply cannot afford that.

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