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Do you remember Tony Blair’s last day in office…?

Away from the fun and games of online dating this blogs other prominent subject seems to be politics. Well it has now been just over five years since the day Tony Blair left office and I came across a video in the annals of my YouTube list that gives the highlights of his final day in office and it was an interesting viewing. Certainly the highlights of his last ever PMQs.

Notes from this video:

Sir Menzies Campbell was a nice chap.
Richard Younger-Ross really didn’t get it.
Tony Blair’s reply the euro sceptic Tory MP was genuinely funny and the fact his MP also genuinely laughed showed this.
Cherie Blair really can’t keep her gob shut can she?

I just thought it was a decent reminder that back in the day a personality really could carry his own weight. The Prime Minister nor his opposition leader have a personality to stand on. Tony Blair would cream either just on natural charisma alone. Politics is shifting and as we’ve seen in London with Boris Johnson the good old fashioned dull politician who is quietly effective isn’t the be all and end all any more. If you can naturally talk then you can actually do something in politics no matter what your policies are.

If you can make people listen to you and not switch off then you have done 90% of what is needed. You just need to ensure that the final 10% of what you actually are trying to get across is good and you’ll do ok. This is in part why no-one won a majority in 2010 in my opinion – neither Brown nor Cameron had a personality. This is why I think Clegg actually saw the Lib Dem vote go up nationally – he seemed a breathe of fresh air at the time. He’s not exactly Boris Johnson but he was by far the most natural with the camera and that is more important now than ever before.

For example if Nadine Dorries did leave the Tories for UKIP then it would do wonders for UKIP. Nadine may not be everyone’s cup of tea but heck put her in front of a camera and for every 100 people of twitter bashing her they’ll be 250 people out there in the real world agreeing with her. It isn’t just about talking sense it is about making the electorate agree with you. Use buzzwords and be something a bit different. Nadine is certainly that and I’d hypothesise that if Nadine was the leader of UKIP they would comfortably to the fourth party in UK politics in 2015 and might even win a few seats.

Nigel Farage has no personality. People look at him and listen to him and switch off. If Nadine was saying exactly the same things I reckon more would lean towards her than Nigel just because she is just so belligerent that she wouldn’t care what the twitterati were saying. She believes so deeply in herself and her PoV that she would just plough through the insults and people would respect that and she would just never quit.

It would be an interesting thing to see but I doubt we’ll ever see it. Tony Blair won three elections mainly on two principles – he was a better showman than his opposite numbers and all he had to say was ‘look, we’re not them’ and that was enough. He won an election even after Iraq when everyone supposedly hated him and his party. He did that because the opposition was such a shambles but because he could still stand up and whether you liked him or not, whether you believed him or not, you always felt he was telling it how he saw it and not how some spin doctor wanted him to spin it. He may have been talking rubbish but he was selling it so well and depressingly I think that is the future of politics. It is style over substance and Tony had style.

I do wish I could go into a parallel universe and see how the 2010 GE would’ve turned out had Tony not resigned and had he kicked Brown to the curb like he wanted to do for so long. I suspect the result would’ve been significantly different and even if Labour hadn’t have won an outright majority then they would certainly have been the dominant party in a Lab-Lib coalition. Sadly I don’t have that power (yet…) and for now it will just remain a hypothesis.

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