I like the Coalition but….

Posted 27 Nov 2012 by Walaa Idris

The one thing I like but also dislike about the Coalition is how suddenly political pacts, coalitions and opponents who agree on very little now think they can work together. Not that coalition government is a post 2010 occurrence, but since then it seems everybody expects and sees pacts and alliances in every opportunity!

For almost a century electoral pacts and coalitions were a local government thing. While on the national stage, every party, particularly the main parties, fought hard for every vote expecting to win outright majorities to get the mandate to govern – while the smaller parties hoped to shape the debate by protesting.

Then 2010 happened!

I like coalitions, because as in business two minds can be much better than one. Also, at times it is better to think and work outside the box. In the case of this coalition government, it was defiantly the best outcome for the country; it also showed political maturity and gallantry.

Alliances tend to test the resolve of the partners. They challenge members while try internal discipline, forcing everyone to stretch and hopefully improve. Regardless of what many may think, in the past two and half years, both partners have matured and discovered more about themselves and each other than they would have just sitting on opposite sides of the house. It might be cliché, but partnerships do bring out shortcomings and strengths equally and that can only be a positive.

On the other hand, what I dislike about the Coalition is the daily drivel of lazy unimaginative thinking by some that from here on, every government will or even should be a coalition!

It’s like opening Genie’s bottle and now the genie is out it can’t be put back in! When history tells us that is not the case, in the past many genies were put back in and this one can certainly be squeezes back into her bottle; however, it needs dedicated hard work.

Not winning outright in 2010 and going into coalition, should have been a test, an eye opener and a warning – particularly where it comes to the Tories.

As the party who has the most to lose. By now (regardless of the boundary changes) the Conservatives should have begun the fight for a majority government. All marginal seats should have had PPCs selected and fully imbedded in those communities. I blogged about this back in August and still think we are taking a huge and unnecessary risk by not moving on this yesterday.

We saw during the last parliament how some prospective candidates burnt out on the eleventh hour. Having PPCs in place for two and half years would have been an opportunity for both (the PPCs and CCHQ) to weed out the weak and the uncommitted. Of course we need to think and act like a partner in government, show and highlight our achievements but we also need to work like a party out of government hungry for office. Marrying the two might seem like a challenge, but we will never again win outright until we have that insatiable appetite, that feeling of can’t take it anymore, enough is enough!

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