INSTANT VIEW: Cameron must now beg UKIP's help
Let's nail this immediately. Mark Reckless's defection to UKIP means that UKIP now has the next election in its hands. David Cameron must beg for an electoral pact with UKIP... and on UKIP's terms. Got that Dave?
If UKIP creates any more political earthquakes there'll be no-one left standing. In reality, that's not quite right is it? Because apart from the mainstream parties and their puppy dogs in the dying mainstream media, the latest defection from Conservative to UKIP by Mark Reckless MP is not in any way unsettling.
We want to shake up British politics. We admire the courage of Mark Reckless and Douglas Carswell. We're not at all against the Conservatives, if they stick to their core principles. We just don't like grovelling, fake Conservatives who are desperate to get the approval of the Guardian and its broadcasting arm, the BBC.
"I can't keep that promise as a Conservative, I can keep it as UKIP", said Reckless more than once in his speech at Saturday's UKIP conference as he announced his defection. He was referring to everything from the fight to leave the EU, through serious political reform, to the battle for a sane and just immigration policy.
There'll be much more to say. But here's the immediate issue to confront in British politics. The task of the day, if you will.
David Cameron will lose the election for the Conservatives unless there is now a serious electoral agreement with UKIP for 2015. He will lose it to Labour, who will form the next government. UKIP doesn't want that either, and we won't get a referendum on the EU if democracy-hating Labour elitists form Britain's next government.
That's the reality; and you're living in a dream world if you can't see that that creates the space for a serious (not superficial) pact between Conservatives and UKIP for next year's general election.
The reality also is that it is David Cameron who is going to have to get his begging bowl out. There'll have to be a deal with UKIP whereby Tory and UKIP don't compete against each other in a whole array of constituencies. That doesn't mean that UKIP gets all the duff ones, where there's no chance of beating Labour or the Lib-Dems.
It means that the Conservative Party accepts that it will have to give UKIP a realistic chance of getting 60-70 MPs at least. Otherwise, the deal's off.
We're quite well aware that this may be a revolutionary thought too far for David Cameron. But we're also telling him and everyone else right now, that if something like this doesn't happen, Ed Miliband will be Britain's next prime minister.
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