Vince Cable, a LibDem dongle on the current Tory Government has been bragging about his ability to bring the whole show down if he doesn't get his way. Perhaps he is so enamoured of the glitter and glamour in the Strictly Come Dancing ballroom that he is tempted to follow Anne Widdecombe into retirement. However, politicians do not like to go quietly so maybe he plans a political spectacular. I understand that aerial gymnastics are unlikely to feature as part of his Christmas 'Strictly' routine so maybe he is contemplating something big for the new year. Might we be treated to 'Cable's been Rumba'd - Cameron devastated', 'Vince Minces no more', or simply ' Cable Shock'? The headline writers are sharpening their HB's in anticipation.
The problem for Vince and the remnants of the LibDems is that the pursuit of power was just too tempting. Unlike the Labour and Tory parties the LibDems have no realistic hope of ever forming a government. The LibDems is in essence the protest wing of both the main parties. The LibDems membership consists of two groups: on the Tory side those who vaguely remember they once had a social conscience and on the other side those who found Labour party constituency meetings just too exciting. But the glue that binds them all together is their hatred of at least one political figure: primary targets have been Margaret Thatcher, Neil Kinnock, Tony Blair (especially Tony Blair) and of course Gordon Brown. But now who do they hate? Well two people. Cleggie of course - their own leader. But also Vince. Vince is the pantomime villain - the one they all love to hiss at whenever he enters the stage and at the moment he is hardly ever off it. He sold out on student fees and worst of all he was caught out talking to reporters from the Daily Telegraph.
So, those two great hopes for the enlightenment of British politics - Clegg and Cable - were seduced by the prospect of power - they sold out their party for a mess of pottage and now they face the political grim reaper. The LibDems is in terminal decline in the shires and the cities - their poll ratings are an embarrassment and now only David Cameron loves them. Make no mistake King Dave has played C&C for all he is worth. They have been superb fools at his court - a lightning rod for some pretty horrid political announcements and like the ventriloquist's dummy have said and done just what he wanted. King David is seriously clever, unlike Vince who thinks he is and Clegg who just isn't. The LibDems will now last just as long as Cameron wants them to. So here is my prognosis for the coming year:
(i) The country will slip back into recession in 2nd quarter 2010
(ii) The AV vote will be lost and Cameron carries on until the Autumn as a minority government.
(iii) There will be a general election in October which Cameron will win with a working majority.
(iv) The Labour Party will realise that ED is no match for DAVE and as 2012 dawns it could well be DAVE versus DAVE at the dispatch box. Now that could be interesting.