Those progressively minded Liberal Democrats, who always regarded the Coalition with the Conservatives as something of a Faustian bargain, must feel their worst nightmares are coming true.
First, they looked on in horror as Nick Clegg, who had pledged to abolish tuition fees in England, ended up trebling them. Then came savage cuts in the welfare budget and an unheralded top-down reorganisation of the English NHS, regarded by many as privatisation by the back door. Along the way the referendum on voting reform was heavily defeated after their Coalition partners campaigned vigorously against it. Then commitments to tackle climate change were watered down. Yesterday it emerged that reform of the House of Lords, a cause on which Mr Clegg has hung his hat, is being abandoned.
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