It is left to me to point out this regrettable, overlooked fact: Dave blew it

This is a column I never thought I’d have to write. I’d assumed that the conclusions to be drawn from the general election were so bleeding obvious that I could leave all the post-match analysis to the experts, while I distracted you with something more cheerful like, say, a piece about Fergal Keane’s brilliant new book on the battle of Kohima.

Apparently not, though. It seems that my job today is to point out an awkward fact that seems to have eluded about 98 per cent of political commentators in the mainstream media and 99.99 per cent of those Conservatives who invested their faith in Project Cameron: Dave blew it.

No, really. He did. Never mind that nonsense about the biggest swing since 1931, making the party electable again, tremendous achievement, best he could have hoped for and all the other desperate apologiae we’ve been hearing of late. Dave had an open goal — or at least one manned only by a cackhanded, decrepid, one-eyed nutcase, viscerally loathed not just by the opposition but by half his own team — and the best he could manage was to hit the post.

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