Thursday, May 06, 2010

I’ve been working here at my desk with the BBC humming in the background. It floats in and out of my consciousness, periodically grabbing and losing my attention. One moment that particularly pulled me in was when the hosts began discussing the merits of a two party system over having multiple minor parties.

The two party system is more stable they said; it is less susceptible to “horse-trading,” making it difficult to form a truly representative government.

Most of all, above all other concerns, is that of stability of government. They lamented the fact that they could potentially have a governing body that did not receive a majority or plurality of votes. They claimed that Gordon Brown had already started the “horse-trading” before the votes were fully counted.

What is most fascinating to me about all of this is that process of horse-trading. How do people form a governing coalition? It amazes me that the Tories might win the most votes, but instead of ending up with Prime Minister David Cameron the UK may end up keeping Gordon Brown who would be forced to build a coalition with the Lib Dems. Even more interesting is that fact that the Lib Dems ended up with a disappointingly small amount of the vote, less than the media hype of the last few weeks, and they would be the kingmakers.

What if the Lib Dems decide to build a coalition with the Tories?! How fascinating that politics would make such strange bedfellows!

Could it be that Gordon Brown becomes the Bush 2000 of England; he loses in the vote count and still, because of the quirks of the system, becomes the head of state? The UK political process is going to be fun to watch over the next few days.

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