Could this be the scene in Downing Street on May 6th?
If the coming election goes according to intenet firm, YouGov, then the result could be a lot closer than many are envisaging.
For while the conventional surveys have leads of upto 12% theYouGov numbers have stayed remarkably constant for months with Labour finding it hard to get above 35%. And it only requires a small slippage on that and we are in the danger area where a small movement could see a vastly reduced majority – or even a hung parliament.
And what happens to Tony Blair if he fails to win a third three figure majority? At what level will the knives be out?
In a way Tony Blair could suffer from the over-egging of the opinion polls which have only raised expectations that a 100+ majority is a certainty. Would 50 seats be seen as a failure or would be survive if it was much lower?
For the only point of Tony Blair for many within his party is that he wins elections. But if that magic has gone could we see a new post-election leader emerge?
The nature of politics is that everybody in a party rallies round the leader in the run-up to the election. But that unity could end at precisely 10pm on May 5th when the polls close and the pent-up frutstration in many parts of the party would come out. You can see Peter Kilfoyle being amongst the first to be interviewed blaiming a sharply reduced majority on Blair.
All this makes the BinaryBet market on who will form the post-election government very interesting. Of course Tony Blair is the hot favourite. But is Gordon Brown worth a bob or two at 25/1? And the 50/1 currently available on it not being Blair/Howard/Brown or Kennedy could be a good long shot.
Â© Mike Smithson 2005