I'm running out of popcorn, wonder how good the final deal will be? Anyway, for those worried that the Lib Dems might "sell out" or whatever, a brief guide to internal party democracy:
Liberal Conspiracy » Liberal Democrats: the clue is in the name

Not sure why so many reformers seem to think that the membership would let Clegg take his pieces of silver, he sure as hell knows he couldn't get away with it.

Note to any Tory inclined readers; your manifesto includes a desire to improve democracy, extend referenda on issues, etc. So what's wrong with the idea of asking the voters how they want to elect Parliament? If you think reform would be so bad, surely you can win the argument in a referendum? What are you scared of?

Anyway, normal service may or may not resume ar some point, but, y'know, most interesting part of an election is always the aftermath, and we might end up getting exactly what I joined the party to campaign for, so I'm talking about that.
Clegg has been offered a deal by the Conservatives, who have executed a massive u-turn on their pre-election "no coalition" position. Mathematically, this is the only coalition possible, the so called "Progressive Majority" coalition is non-starter in terms of votes in the House of Commons.

So Clegg has to decide what he wants to do, and then persuade the Lib Dem party that this is viable. Note, as a democratic party, there are strict rules on this. Details, and my strong opinion )
I'm completely, utterly, committed to reforming our political and electoral system. It's the reason I got involved in politics, the reason I rejoined the Lib Dems, and the reason I've become very active within it. My long-expired membership of the Lib Dems was renewed at a time when Labour were riding high in the polls and passing legislation I abhorred. The party is committed to genuine reform of the constitution, and official policy is to call for a citizen's convention, a policy passed (with my vote in the conference chamber) significantly after I a argued that Britain needs a constitutional convention. We need electoral reform, but many in the Tory backwoods instinctively oppose it.

Jennie argues, and I agree with her, that they shouldn't oppose it, and sets out how we could sell STV in multi member constituencies to tribal Tories. But a citizen's convention is almost certainly the best way to acheive this.

The country needs stable government. The only viable stable government possible is a Tory/Lib Dem coalition. It's either this or another election in 6 months time. While I, personally, don't object to more elections (apart from the exhaustion, I really enjoyed the last few weeks), and a fresh election would favour the LDs in a lot of seats they only just came 2nd in, I don't think that's a good thing for the country.

LDs do not hold the balance of power

The Lib Dems do not hold the balance of power. They don't get to choose between parties. They can only choose between forming a stable Govt with some reform, and an unstable Govt with another election soon. That's not a nice choice. And Clegg has to make it, and and it's possible that I might have to go to a conference and vote on that choice.

That's not a nice position to be in.

Who should you vote for? UK General Election quiz

Liberal Democrat67
Green59
UK Independence10
Conservative0
Labour-4

You expected: LIB

Your recommendation: Liberal Democrat

Click here for more details about these results

Not in any way a surprise here, but crucially this year they appear to have takn on board criticism made last time (well, the guy who coded it read my post) and the issues appear to me to be a fair spread of party policies.

However, last time it biased in favour of the Lib Dems, and I got Lib Dem, which, y'know, I should; anyone from different parties wanting to critique it are welcome to post in the comments if they don'[t want to blog it themselves.

I'm awake, honest. I've had enough coffee to get me going again anyway. Doing some tidying up to my LJ, renaming tags, etc. This seems like a good enough reason to rename one of them, plus 2008 has ended so it's time to start a new 'life' tag for this year.

Appears I've posted less about what's been going on in my life this year than any other calender year that I've had the LJ. I guess being happy gives me less to write about, right? Completely skint, but there y'go, can't have everything.

I don't do new years resolutions, and, well, predictions are a bit of a mugs game, but, well, might as well.

UK: politics will dominate, likely election, bit of history explaining why )

Obama's honeymoon, potential pitfalls, hope he holds it together )

Europe, Referenda, Libertas and elections )

Meh, 7pm. Time to go pick the Shrub up from her Dad's.
So, El Gordo has chickened out and is 'treating people as fools', almost certainly as a result of this News of the World poll. He's attempted to defend the decision but I concur with the Observer, this has sparked a Crisis for Brown as election ruled out. All of this leads me to this YouTube vid by Will/[livejournal.com profile] whoukmy friend Mr Pack[1]:
Scary analysis of it from the perspective of the Tories:
A poll to be published by Sunday's News of the World puts the Tories ahead by 6% in marginal seats, with the party overall at 44% against Labour's 38%.

Translated into a general election, it would mean a hung Parliament with Labour holding 306 seats and the Tories 246.
They'd win 6% more votes, but 60 less seats according to the analysis. Can we have STV now PLZKTHX. Oh wait, that sort of forward thinking is beyond the Stupid Party isn't it.

The real question I guess is has this damaged Brown more for the obvious reasons, or has he hurt the Cameron Project by forcing Davy to tack to the right and go for a core votes strategy?
Crossposted on my journal and to [livejournal.com profile] ukpolitics here

[1] Message from Mark: Will's work, but I put it all down to the management, so amended accordingly
matgb: Artwork of 19th century upper class anarchist, text: MatGB (Default)

British Liberal, house husband, school play leader and stepdad. Campaigner, atheistic feminist, amateur baker. Male.

Known to post items of interest on occasions. More likely to link to interesting stuff. Sometimes talks about stuff he's done. Occasionally posts recipes for good food. Planning to get married, at some point. Enjoying life in Yorkshire.

Likes comments. Especially likes links. Loves to know where people came from and what they were looking for. Mostly posts everything publicly. Sometimes doesn't. Hi.

Mat Bowles

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I'm the Chair of the Brighouse branch of the Liberal Democrats & the membership secretary for Calderdale Lib Dems and run the web campaign for the local candidates. I have a job, a stepdaughter and a life.

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