I’m posting it reluctantly since these UK updates invariably prove to be traffic poison, but when one of our closest allies changes governments, there’s no choice. I told you last night why I think the Conservatives would be smart to stay in the minority for now. As it is, they’re looking at Ross Douthat’s nightmare scenario — an untenable coalition with the far-left that’ll force a new election soon, with the Tories at risk of a voter backlash after public disgruntlement over budget cuts sets in.
I haven’t seen hard details yet on what Cameron had to give Clegg and the Lib Dems in order to reach a deal but some sort of referendum on electoral reform is in the works. If it passes, the newly empowered Lib Dems will quit the coalition in order to force new elections and British government will descend into semi-permanent instability. If it doesn’t pass, which I assume the Conservatives think is the likely result, the coalition will probably fracture sooner rather than later anyway and Labour will be poised for a minor comeback.
More good news: Anti-Atlanticist left-winger Nick Clegg is now deputy PM. Given that Cameron himself is eyeing closer ties with India rather than the U.S., the “special relationship” may be on its last legs.