There’s going to be plenty of time to figure all the detail out later, but one hunch I have been labouring under for some time is the supposition that for all the talk of how UKIP would eat Labour or the Conservatives the party they actually ate was the Lib Dems. Necessarily so, since after 2010 some of their MPs were dug in very shallowly and could no longer count on tactical votes from Labour voters.
The Lib Dems were, effectively, everyone else’s survivalist rations. In Mid Dorset for instance, the Ashcroft Polls found that whilst the Conservative vote was defecting to UKIP they were going in much larger numbers from the Lib Dems.
The dalliance with coalition politics appears short lived. And this may be one key reason why so many last minute deciders acted to get rid of the source of the political uncertainty (or the mudguard as we know it in Ireland).
Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty