With the dramatic announcement that Gordon Brown has called upon the Labour Party to initiate a leadership contest that he won’t be taking part in, the political landscape has suddenly been turned upside down. As, Terry Pratchett wrote in ‘The Fifth Elephant’, “And suddenly the world was tap-dancing on quicksand. In that case, the prize went to the best dancer.” Given how fast-moving the situation is now, the big question is, who is the best dancer?
It was clear from an early stage that whilst many Liberal Democrats favoured a deal with Labour, the idea of leaving Gordon Brown in 10 Downing Street was unthinkable. To be blunt, he isn’t collegiate, he isn’t consensual, he’s a bit of a control freak. In short, he rubs liberals up the wrong way.
So, what happens now? Is it possible to negotiate terms with a political party without an effective head, and what will that party look like after a leadership contest?
I’m guessing that I’ll be seeing rather less of my wife than I might have hoped…