After the exit poll and the first few results, I went to bed then got up at 5 for the results proper. I wasn’t quite going to live-limerick-blog the poll, but I wanted to see how many of the headlines I could capture. It took a few hours and some strong coffee to get my head around it, but anyway here is my morning’s work.
Starting with George Galloway, the cat-suited milk-lapping Respect leader with a record of winning by-elections but failing to hold the seat. I’m sure he’ll have another crack soon.
LACK OF RESPECT
George Galloway lost Bradford West,
His latest electoral test.
As voters reject
The man from Respect
Perhaps he should give it a rest.
A more important story, of course, was the Lib Dem wipeout – from 50 seats to 8, with many coalition ministers out. Late last night former party leader Paddy Ashdown said if the exit poll was right he’d eat his hat. This morning the fedora fricasee remains sadly untouched.
The Lib Dems have tasted defeat
In many a minister’s seat
From Yeovil to Twickenham
Voters are kickin’ em.
Ashdown needs headgear to eat.
Labour’s biggest casualty was the outgoing Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls. It’s unclear whether April 28 will still be celebrated as Ed balls Day on Twitter – commemorating the day in 2011 when he tweeted the message “Ed Balls” to the world. (http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/ed-balls-signs-and-auctions-his-infamous-tweet-ruins-it-with-best-wishes-10041509.html)
NEW BALLS PLEASE
The outgoing member for Morley
Was beaten as Labour did poorly
A new future calls
For Mr Ed Balls
Whom Twitter will miss very sorely.
The biggest winners of the night were the Scottish National Party, who picked up 56 of 59 seats in Scotland (on 50% of the vote – but that’s first-past-the-post for you) They ran on a left-wing anti-austerity ticket, but will now be governed at a national level by a welfare-cutting party with one seat in Scotland (and 15% of the vote – but that’s first-past-the-post for you).
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon
Saw SNP poll support surgin’
But England stayed Tory
So part of the story
Is how the UK is divergin’.///
In England, the nationalist vote did not do as well – the long-awaited UKIP surge failed to rule the waves, with just one Tory defector holding his seat. Nigel Farage had said he’d resign if he failed to win Thanet South, and he kind of kept his promise. He’s having a bit of a Gap Year anyway.
MAKING NEW PLANS FOR NIGEL*
The final result in South Thanet
Does not go as Ukippers plan it
So farewell Farage
No more badinage
You said if you lost you would can it.
The Lib Dems, long the party of the protest vote, paid the price for flirting with government as a junior coalition partner. They incensed their own support by breaking a 2010 election promise not to raise tuition fees. Somehow leader Nick Clegg was one of the eight Lib Dems who still had a seat when the music stopped – but the man of whom five years ago everyone said “I agree with Nick” had to quit as leader.
THEY DISAGREED WITH NICK
The Liberal Democrat Nick
Got in with the Tories too thick.
When his coalition
Hiked fees for tuition
Electors gave Clegg’s party stick.
And so to Labour – and the ‘Ed Stone’ tablet of pledges unveiled last week did indeed turn out to mark the death of Ed Miliband’s political leadership. Two Eds may be better than one, but one lost and the other quit as a leader. Shame, it’s a great name for crossword compilers and limerick writers!
PARTY LOSES ITS ED
There once was a leader named Ed
Who failed to turn the map red
As Labour was beaten
From Ayr to Nuneaton
So losing its Balls and its head.
Which brings us to the night’s surprise winner – not even David Cameron expected to be returned with a clear majority. Though he may find now that dealing with Lib Dems is preferable to his own factional lot, what with an EU referendum and his own succession to go through – and Boris Johnson back in parliament to fight with Theresa May for it.
CAMERON… AND ON… AND ON
The PM has been reelected
With more seats than people expected,
And so he can stay
While Johnson and May
Hang on for the day he’s rejected.
* Refers to this song by XTC: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gXNhL4J_S00
BOOK PLUG: If you enjoyed these, you might also like There Was an Old Geezer Called Caesar – A History of the World in 100 Limericks.And if you’ve got it already, why not leave a review.