Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Shifting Sands

As London's afternoon goes by, media commentary from there has shifted once again, back to the notion that the Liberal Democrats will form a coalition government with the Conservatives.

More and more senior Labour Party figures are publicly stating their opposition to a deal between their party, the Liberal Democrats, and nationalist parties in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

For one thing, they are alarmed by the proportional representation proposals that have been put on the table, in Labour-Liberal Democrat talks.

At least one major Labour figure has stated something that is rather obvious, that his party could not co-exist with Scottish Nationalists in a coalition government. Prime Minister Gordon Brown is a Scotsman, and his government, and that of his Labour predecessor Tony Blair, have been dominated by Scotsmen at the highest levels. It has been a high priority for them to head off the movement for an independent Scotland, which is spearheaded by the Scottish National Party (SNP). The coalition arithmetic doesn't work without the SNP's six members of Parliament (MPs).

The Times reports that Liberal Democrat MPs will meet at 7:30 tonight (2:30 pm EDT), and speculates that they might at that time approve a coalition with the Conservatives.

UPDATE: London media are now reporting that a Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition looks like a sure thing, and that Brown's resignation as prime minister could happen as early as tonight. There is even a report that moving vans are assembling at the back door of 10 Downing Street.

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