Just when you think life can’t get any worse, it suddenly does.
There we all were, public and politicos alike, positively howling for the cessation of the madness on 6th May, only to return a hung Parliament. Now we learn that the result not only means that the news media are promising to camp outside an empty House of Commons indefinitely, speculating on what Vince Cable’s tie indicates about the willingness of Tories and Liberals to co-operate on fisheries policy, but worse: that we might be re-running the electoral fun in about 18 months time. Or less.
The papers this Sunday are a pale reflection the kind of limbo-induced ennui that teenagers in Broken Britain must feel whilst whiling away the dead hours before they can get to the park bench and the Diamond White, as they attempt to fill the empty pages between now and, you know, something actually happening. For the sanity of the nation, we can only hope that Cameron and Clegg get their shit on, PDQ.
Putting a brave face on it is Observer commentator Nick Cohen who argues that all this could have a beneficial effect on the political landscape. In the less sanguine manner for which we all love him, the Mail on Sunday’s Peter Hitchens calls Cameron’s Conservatives a “cynical fake” and calls for a split between them and “traditional” Tories. The Sunday Times front page has a useful “… as established earlier in the plot” piece with the new information that chief whip, or former chief whip as we now must call him, Nick Brown has informed the Gord that the Parliamentary Labour Party will not wear a deal with the Liberal Democrats.
As various MPs call for Brown to quit, the News of the World has the gen on the leadership bids that are being planned by David Miliboy and Ed Balls, as soon as the PM decides to shuffle off this political coil. And, of course, now we know who both the candidates are, we’re expecting nothing less than a good, clean fight.
Meanwhile, both the Sunday Mirror and the Observer are reporting trouble up t’mill, as they almost certainly don’t say in the Conservative Party. Lord Ashcroft has apparently been complaining that Cameron’s decision to win the Murdoch endorsement by getting behind the Sky campaign for leaders’ debates, in his view, cost the Tories an overall majority. Other offenders fingered for the Conservatives not ruling Britannia as nature intended are Michael Gove, Oliver Letwin and, inevitably, groovy guru Steve Hilton.
Finally, the first potential expenses scandal of the new Parliament is revealed by the Sunday Times. Go on, you’ll never guess …Like this article? Sign up to Left Foot Forward's weekday email for the latest progressive news and comment - and support campaigning journalism by making a donation today.