the deal is done


This has been a messy and convoluted process, no question. However, our reaction to it is in part due to the fact that we are used to the straight handover of power from one party to another- unlike the overwhelming majority of European democracies. Have we the best outcome from the election result? The straight answer to this question would seem to be yes- 61% of those who voted did so for one of the two parties in coalition. And the negotiating process has led to cherished policies of both being included in the agreement. When you look at the broad outline agreement, you can easily argue that the policies best reflect the majority opinion of the country, broadly Eurosceptic, wanting some control on immigration, desiring tax cuts for the poor rather than the rich and keen on political reform. I also happen to think that given the financial circumstances of the country, this was the only stable option to provide a way forward. The counter argument runs from those who believe voting Lib Dem to be implicitly a vote against the Tories (could there not have been an anti-Labour vote this time?)- well, stand back a minute and consider this: are you voting against a party’s policies or simply through hatred of the brand per se? Because if you are voting against the policies, you should be encouraged that having another force in the coalition will act as a check and balance on the worst excesses of pure party dogma. I think this outcome reflects the will of the people- to reject the outgoing government but not to give an overwhelming mandate to the Conservatives. The country needs leadership and certainty- now is the opportunity for David Cameron and Nick Clegg to provide it. There was a clamour for ‘a new politics’ during the campaign. What we have is a new political situation- only the coalition government can demonstrate whether our politics has improved.  And our responsibility? Well, it’s to pray for righteousness and justice to be evident in all that they seek to do.

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