To look at this from a UK perspective, I have given this a lot of thought as we have a general election next year (Civil Contingencies Act permitting). Abstention or a vote for a party other than Cameron’s “Conservatives” runs a real risk of preventing the eviction of the Labour party that has done so much damage in the past 13 years. Given another 5 years they could add incalculable damage to an already impressive list.
On the other hand, a vote for the “Conservatives” would vindicate Cameron’s position, kowtowing to the supposed BBC/Guardian left of centre (quite a long way left of centre actually) “consensus”. In the short term Cameron would do less harm than another Labour government, but his success would result in future “Conservative” governments following the same policies so we would be stuck with them for the long term.
The question I asked myself was: do I think Labour can do more damage in 5 years than Cameron’s “Conservatives” can in 10, 15 or more? My answer was no, another five years of Labour is less threatening than an indefinite period of Cameron “Conservatism”. Once defeated Cameron would be dropped like the proverbial hot brick and then it will time to start working for a new leader with Conservative beliefs.
– Commenter MarkE