If the hysteria frothing from today’s popular press is any guide, Britain is heading for a cliff…

“Vote DECISIVELY to stop Britain walking blindly into disaster”, screams The Daily Mail.

“ETON RIFLES”, shouts the Daily Mirror — “Ruthless David Cameron is planning to sack thousands of teachers and police officers if he sneaks into No10 tomorrow.”

“DOSSIER THAT SHAMES LABOUR”, thunders The Sun over stories that include “LA gangs take over UK streets”, “The killer bugs infecting wards” and “Violent streets of immigrant UK”.

“Proof Labour is out of control,” exclaims the Daily Express — “Pens and paper for public servants are costing taxpayers £850million a year.”

But as Charles Richardson writes today in Crikey, tomorrow’s UK election is fascinating chiefly for its constitutional possibilities, in particular the provision that mandates a prime minister to remain in office until something happens to force him out: death, resignation or dismissal. Charles notes:

“If the Tories win the largest number of votes and/or seats, but short of a majority, David Cameron is perfectly entitled to declare himself the winner (as Scottish Nationalist Alex Salmond did in a similar situation in Scotland in in 2007). But that has zero effect on the constitutional process. The incumbent is fully entitled to exhaust the possibilities of negotiation for a coalition or support for a minority government.”

If you think the British media is hyperventilating today, just wait till (our time) Friday…

Peter Fray

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