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Once asked what his favourite joke was, David Cameron, leader of the Conservative Party and now Prime Minister, replied, “Nick Clegg”.

Nick Clegg is the leader of the Liberal-Democrat Party and is now the Deputy Prime Minister.

Constructive talks between teams representing their two parties lasting a mere five days (it took the Germans 40 days to form their most recent government), and in which both made huge concessions to the other in order to form a stable government at a critical time in the nation’s history, have resulted in the first coalition government in this country in my lifetime.

David Cameron and Nick Clegg News conference – part 1

David Cameron and Nick Clegg News conference – part 2

Cameron hails ‘shift in politics’

Virgin Media

David Cameron has hailed “a historic and seismic shift” in Britain’s political landscape as he launched the country’s first coalition government since the Second World War.

The new Prime Minister marked his inaugural day in office by handing two major economic portfolios to his Liberal Democrat allies, anointing Vince Cable as Business Secretary and David Laws as Chief Secretary to the Treasury.

He also promised “very early legislation” to establish fixed-term Parliaments, effectively enshrining in law the Conservatives’ five-year coalition deal with the Lib Dems.

At a joint news conference with new Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg – held in the garden of No 10 – Mr Cameron said the award of a total of five Cabinet jobs to Lib Dems underlined the parties’ “sincere determination” to work together.

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It never ceases to amaze and move me the grace with which the losing girls make their exit from Over the Rainbow — a grace which Gordon Brown also displayed as he made his final departure from Number 10 Downing Street.

Last Thursday, the British electorate went to the polls to elect a new government. Although there were still 53 seats to declare, it was clear, by the time I got up on Friday morning, that there was no clear winner and that we were well into “hung parliament territory” — where no party has an outright majority and either the largest party has to seek to govern alone or two of the three major parties form a coalition.

“The British people have spoken, Lord (Paddy) Ashdown, a former leader of the Liberal Democrat Party declared, “only nobody seems to know what they’ve said.” (The general consensus seems to be that the result is not a repudiation of the Labour Party, which Gordon Brown leads, but of Brown himself, and it is not an endorsement of David Cameron and the Conservatives, who have the largest number of seats.)

The leaders of Britains’s third largest party, the Liberal Democrats suddenly found themselves, therefore, in the role of “kingmaker”, as they opened began negotiations with the party which had gained the most seats, the Conservative Party, while Gordon Brown, the current Prime Minister and leader of the Labour Party which has governed the country for the last thirteen years, remained in 10 Downing Street, the UK premier’s official residence, and considered his options. (more…)

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Chief of Staff Draws Fire From Left as Obama Falters

Wall Street Journal

By PETER WALLSTEN JANUARY 26, 2010

WASHINGTON—President Barack Obama’s liberal backers have a long list of grievances. The Guantanamo Bay prison is still open. Health care hasn’t been transformed. And Wall Street banks are still paying huge bonuses.

But they are directing their anger less at Mr. Obama than at the man who works down the hall from him. Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, they say, is the prime obstacle to the changes they thought Mr. Obama’s election would bring.

Some observers say Rahm Emanuel is losing favor with liberal Democrats. Could his job be on the line? Kelsey Hubbard talks with WSJ’s Peter Wallsten about the future of President Obama’s chief of staff.

The friction was laid bare in August when Mr. Emanuel showed up at a weekly strategy session featuring liberal groups and White House aides. Some attendees said they were planning to air ads attacking conservative Democrats who were balking at Mr. Obama’s health-care overhaul.

“F—ing retarded,” Mr. Emanuel scolded the group, according to several participants. He warned them not to alienate lawmakers whose votes would be needed on health care and other top legislative items.

Deja-Vu? Well, not being up to date on Emanuel’s history, I wondered why, with his Zionist connections, he was chosen as senior adviser by Obama. So, being kind of  kicked back in the now, went straight to the Wiki. I wasn’t disappointed.

Some highlights:
*At the start of then-Arkansas Governor Bill Clinton’s presidential primary campaign, Emanuel was appointed to direct the campaign’s finance committee.

*Following the campaign, Emanuel became a senior advisor to Clinton at the White House from 1993 to 1998. In the White House, Emanuel was initially Assistant to the President for Political Affairs and then Senior Advisor to the President for Policy and Strategy.

*He was a leading strategist in the unsuccessful White House efforts to institute universal healthcare; and many other Clinton initiatives
*
*Emanuel was named to the Board of Directors for the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (“Freddie Mac”) by then President Bill Clinton in 2000.


Rahm Israel Emanuel

A view from beyond the Left

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