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Saturday, May 8

The UK Elections

Back on Thursday night, a major circus took place in the United Kingdom, as millions of people went to the polls. I took the advantage of the Internet and C-SPAN to watch the returns:

Actually it wasn't at all like that.

The outcome of the election, marred as it was by hundreds being turned away from polling stations when they closed at 10 PM, resulted in a clear win for the Conservative Party in the actual vote. However, the actual vote translates to seats in the 650-member House of Commons, and the winning majority was 326 seats.

The Conservatives could only muster 305 seats, and now the bidding war starts.

Prime Minister Brown, stubbornly clinging to his post, is reportedly trying to assemble a "coalition of losers" comprising his own Labour Party (which only got about 27% of the vote), the Liberal Democrats (the third-largest party with about 57 seats) and a collection of the smaller single-digit parties. By the English Constitution, as incumbent PM Brown gets first crack at trying to set up a workable majority government.

David Cameron, the Tory leader, made an open and public bid for Nick Clegg and the Liberal Democrats to ally with the Tories, which would create a rather interesting coalition. Either way, there would probably be another general election probably later this year.

The back room deals and talks that are going on remind me a lot of the BBC / Masterpiece Theater production House of Cards, featuring the late and great Ian Richardson as the deliciously evil Sir Francis Urquhart:

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