Political

Reasons not to have an ‘early’ general election: a footnote

At the weekend I threw in another reason why Gordon Brown is very unlikely to call a general election before May.

The Times’s Danny Finkelstein has a good perspective on the issue today:

In every election I have been involved in, there has been a last-minute rumour about an early poll date. And every one has involved a mad dash to get things ready, all those little practical details that you were going to get round to but hadn’t. Followed by anticlimax.

Quite.

It’s sensible to err on the side of caution and be prepared (who has ever regretted being prepared in what turns out to be good time?). It’s also worth remembering that we have, very occasionally, got close to a genuinely early election (both Brown and Major toyed with the idea in the autumn after becoming Prime Minister).

So whilst those who always blithely put off getting prepared keep on running risks which one day will come back to haunt them, usually there’s far more hype and over-excitement than the realities justify.

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