Charles Clarke has today in the Eastern Daily Press turned his fire on the Lib Dems as he wakes up to the fact that his Norwich South seat is, under new boundaries, more vulnerable to the Lib Dems than ever.
Mr Clarke says "I am hoping the electors in Norwich South will look at all the candidates and not vote in some kind of tactical way."
Of course not. that would be the last thing he would want. The tactical vote is more likely to shift as there were some people who voted for the then second placed Tory in order to beat Labour, but with the Tories now starting in third, their vote will fall further.
Another factor for Charles Clarke is that he knows that the Greens have done very well at garnering support from Lib Dems and Labour voters in local elections, but that all the evidence from across the country points to the fact that where the Greens do well in local elections, their vote switches to the Lib Dems in general elections. Whilst some people might enjoy having a Green councillor, the last thing they would want is a Green government !
In Oxford East, a real powerhouse nationally for the Greens, the Greens polled more than 25% in the local elections held on the same day as the general election yet in the general election they polled less than 10%, with the Lib Dems picking up most of the vote from them , and narrowly failing to beat another former Labour Minister in that seat.
It is clear that Simon Wright, the Lib Dem candidate in Norwich South has helped transfer the local Lib Dems there. For the first time ever the Lib Dems held a seat that the Greens had targeted whilst the local party's campaigning has sharpened up and is trying to each the standards set by North Norfolk Lib Dems.
And what of the Tories in Norwich South ? No candidate selected yet, their candidate from last time tried to get chosen for another seat and starting in third place in a seat they won in 1983. The Tories themselves admit that their campaigning persuaded enough people not to vote Lib Dem last time and helped keep Charles Clarke the seat. You can do that from second place, but from third ? Less likely I think.