Balls: “”Before or after the next election, if the parliamentary arithmetic throws up the need for a coalition of Labour and the Lib Dems, I would go into that with enthusiasm…I could serve in a Cabinet with Chris Huhne or Vince Cable tomorrow.”
While many may vomit as they listen to the pack of lies being told by some of the journalistic fraternity at the Leveson Inquiry, the whoppers aren’t half the size of those relayed to hacks every day of the week by celebrities of every shape and hue. There’s a particularly fine example in The Independent this morning, with Ed Balls telling two star reporters why the LibDems should leave the Coalition and join Labour.
I cannot imagine any prospect more likely to give Morleyballs a sweating attack than the thought of people he loathes even more than the Tories joining with his beloved Cloth-eared version of the Labour Party. But there is method in his masochism.
Ed is always a man with a plan. The plan changes depending on which event proved his previous plan wrong, but the end goal is always the same: power for Ed. This new one is called “How to wipe the LibDems out for good and stop splitting the ‘progressive’ vote”. Under the terms of Camerlot’s idiotic 5-Year Parliaments Act, it is now constitutionally possible for a Coalition partner to switch sides without the necessity of a General Election. Mr Balls is well aware of the fact that the Cleggies would face annihilation were an election to be called, so his offer would be tempting to some….thus destabilising the Coalition still further.
There would be meetings, and their existence would be leaked by Balls (who learned such tricks at the feet of McMaster) and then Mr B would tell a pack of lies about how “greedy and unreasonable” the LibDem demands had been, thus leaving them in the wilderness, and the Tories in limbo. Meanwhile, further defections follow from LibDem voters to Labour (so Ed’s theory has it, although this is a flawed expectation) the economic landscape deteriorates rapidly, and the chaos demands a General Election. Which, of course, Labour wins.
It’s not hard to assert that this is what Ed would do, because it is precisely what he did in May 2010. To this day, Vince Cable despises him for it, for Ed Balls is the single and only reason why he is trapped in a loveless Coalition. Balls’ behaviour at the two negotiating sessions was described to me by an attendee as “feral”. Teddy Boy Balls refused to use the Party’s proper name, referring to them as “the Liberals” throughout.
All this forward planning, scheming and being wrong about stuff is why Ed has always been such an ineffective Minister. It’s also why he never sorts out the really big stuff. At the moment, this concerns the existence of a claymation puppet where the Leader should be, and how to get rid of him. In favour of Ed B. But Mr Balls must be careful: Lord Mandelson is in the other camp (so to speak) quite rightly seeing the Morley Mauler as electoral antimatter. What fun lies ahead.