5.5.05

(No) Anarchy In The UK ...

Too bad I don't have time to comment on what's going on now here in Canada, but hey, I've got work to do, it's what pays the bills - what can I say.

The count is *slowly* coming in from the UK (unless their server is overloaded, you should be able to get live results here or here). It seems they don't release official results from ridings in dribs and drabs, like we do here. Instead, they wait till the whole count is done within a particular riding. Then, they haul all the candidates onto a stage at a central location, and read off the results.

Given the language flying around these days here, I'm just as glad they don't do it that way here - there'd be fisticuffs aplenty.

Anyway, they're predicting a Labour win. I'm sort of torn on this. Labour has been on-side on the war on terror from the beginning, but at the same time, I don't think I would have a lot of time for their domestic policies. The UK Conservatives are the opposite: I would likely support most of their domestic policies, but they keep trying to "pull a Kerry" on the war. And while Tony Blair isn't my ideal choice, it's not as if the Brits are re-electing Michael Foot.

I'm sure I would have ended up voting Conservative, and I'm glad to see that based on exit polls / early results, they'll eat into Tony Blair's majority, perhaps quite significantly - but I'm not exactly heartbroken that Blair appears to have been re-elected.

And here's some great news, regardless of the results: although there were a couple of small explosions at the British consulate in New York City, there were no terrorist-inspired disruptions of the election.

One last thing: isn't it interesting to see that GW Bush, Blair, and Michael Howard have all been returned to office?

UPDATE: You can watch live results from the Beeb via C-Span in the USA here (this link tends to be a bit wonky, so you may need to go to C-Span's main site and go from there.)

More later.

2 Comments:

At 9:46 PM, Blogger Psychols said...

The re-election of Blair is hardly an endorsement of the invasion of Iraq. The UK conservatives fought a nasty campgaign and demonstrated that Howard (of the UK) is unsuitable to govern. Howard is also generally more hawkish than Blair.

It was Brown who pulled the real "Kerry", and it looks as if he has a pretty good shot at taking over from Blair.

 
At 8:05 AM, Blogger Jason Hickman said...

Oh, I disagree, on a number of fronts.

First, the Conservatives gained votes and seats from Labour. As much as I may have wanted a Tory win (though not without some misgivings), it wasn't realistic to expect a pickup of 160+ seats in one night.

Second, "nasty" is in the eye of the beholder. I would say that all 3 major parties, plus most of the minor ones, ran aggressive campaigns. British politics is not, shall we say, unfamiliar with these sorts of campaigns.

Third, I do note that the anti-war LibDems did well on the night, but even if you say that the Blair re-election wasn't an endorsement of Iraq, parties that were (at least nominally) in favour of toppling Saddam won a vast majority of seats.

Like I said in my main post, the fact is that the 3 most prominant members of the "coalition of the willing" have been returned to office. What's more, Blair was the only one of the 3 that lost votes and/or seats, and he was the only one whose main opposition was also in favour of the war.

Granted, Iraq is hardly the only reason why Blair / Howard / Bush were re-elected, but it *is* fair to say that despite predictions and protestations from the left, Iraq did not result in their defeat.

 

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