Sunday, May 09, 2010

Coalition forming

No party wields a majority in the House of Commons. The incumbent Labour government is tired. Labour has offered to change the voting system to the Alternative Vote in order to stay in office. The Prime Minister has been rushing back to London from his home in Scotland. There is a major market crisis and the public spending deficit desperately needs to be cut. Political and financial speculation is strong. The leaders of the parties enter negotiations. And then...

Yes August 1931 was an interesting time in this country. What, did you think I was talking about something else?

What was different was the government that emerged. A special "National Government" that drew together politicians from all three parties was formed under Ramsay MacDonald with the Conservative leader, Stanley Baldwin, and the acting Liberal leader, Herbert Samuel, both putting partisan considerations aside (including the bill for the Alternative Vote being allowed to quietly die) and serving under them. The politicians put country before party and the government slowly managed to turn the country round.

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