There are lots of other bloggers out there who will tell you who they are voting for and why, so I don’t need to add to that. But I will tell you about the 3 main things I’m feeling today.
The first is apprehension about the result and what it could mean not for politics in this country, but for people. There are some big choices that will need to be made in the next parliament, and if those decisions aren’t called correctly, significant numbers of people will be much worse off. This whole general election campaign has focused on the process of politics, especially through things like the leaders’ debate. But the campaign should have been about the content, because that’s what will make the difference in the next 5 years.
The second is bemusement. How on earth we don’t know the outcome of this election is actually beyond me. In his last party conference speech, Tony Blair said this of the Tories:
If we can’t take this lot apart in the next few years, we shouldn’t be in the business of politics at all
They think it is all about image… the next election won’t be about image unless we let it be.
The inevitable conclusion is that Labour did let it all be about image and that they didn’t take the Tories apart. And yet, despite this, the public has still figured it out for themselves: from a 28-point lead in one poll in September 2008, the Tories are averaging an 8-point lead in the final polls yesterday. My bemusement is therefore that both Labour and the Tories lost this election.
And the third is excited. The sad thing is that, when the dust has long settled on this general election, my excitement will remain.
As the exchange goes at the end of Rio Bravo:
Pat Wheeler: A game-legged old man and a drunk. That’s all you got?
John T. Chance: That’s what I got.
Alas. Politics is that game-legged old man and the drunk.