Monday, March 09, 2009
It seems the Lib Dems may be preparing to look at a Liberal Conservative Pact in the event of a hung parliament after the next election. That, at least, is the substance of a report on Nick Robinson's blog, and an FT report as well. The problem for the Liberals is that, whatever the logic of a Tory pact, most of their activists hate the Tories, and the Liberal party as a whole is far more sympathetic to Labour. You can find plenty of examples of Lib-Lab pacts in both local government and, until the nationalists kyboshed the idea, in the devolved assemblies. There are, however, precious few examples of Lib-Con deals in any governmental organisation in the UK. And the reason, of course, is that the two parties are simply not natural allies. Although both may be in opposition at present, it is all too easy to forget that the Liberal Democrats are a left of centre party and the Tories are a right of centre party. They exist in clear opposition to each other, and that is the reality that Nick, Vince and Chris are having to confront in their pre-election pact planning!