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Cast the 2015 election runes

Worth following Election Forecast, a website that crunches the numbers and spits out a regular prediction of the 2015 general election results.

Now, you’d be forgiven for thinking the UKIP are about to sweep to power, but even though they’ve won the last couple of byelections, they won’t win more than a handful of seats. Of course, they may affect lots of other results, but there’s another party that’ll have a bigger say.

Today, here’s how the prediction looks:

Party Lo Seats Hi Swing
Conservatives 234 280 321 -26
Labour 241 282 328 24
Liberal Democrats 17 27 39 -30
SNP 24 35 46 29
Plaid Cymru 1 3 5 0
Greens 0 1 2 0
UKIP 1 3 8 3
Other 1 1 1 0

If you take the middle range numbers the outcome will be… variable. Your interpretation will depend on your mood.

Feeling cheerful? The SNP, Lib Dems, Plaid Cymru and Greens throw their lot in with Labour to form a surprisingly progressive, fairly leftwingish coalition. The bedroom tax and lunatic benefits sanctions are repealed. Austerity is quietly put to bed.

Feeling manically happy? Student fees are scrapped along with Universal Benefit. We get major public investment and an unconditional basic income. In a Borgen–like twist, we also get a Green PM.

Feeling more… realistic? Labour fails to court the SNP and the SNP doesn’t join a coalition. The Lib Dems hold the balance of power, despite losing 30 seats. They form a coalition with Labour, but the SNP make life impossibly difficult.

Move away from the middle column and things go nuts, sometimes in very bad ways. The Tories win a majority. The Lib Dems and Tories form another coalition.

Feeling dismal? The UKIP hold the balance of power.

What does seem clear is that the SNP will be major players. Not sure how good or bad that actually is.