We should be getting used to hearing the phrase "Prime Minister David Cameron" by now, but I don't know about you, it still makes me shudder every time it pops out of my car radio or television.
The framework for the coalition government was agreed in a remarkably short time, probably because of media impatience. The UK press seemed to expect it to be sorted out like one would arrange who was bringing what, to a weekend barbeque. But of course, the media dictated and managed this whole election from the start. When the electorate didn't do exactly what Mr Murdoch, et al told us to, and elect a majority Conservative government, they had a tantrum and demanded the next best thing, the ConDemNation.
The fact that an agreement over coalition and sharing of various responsibilities was possible in such a short space of time, demonstrates that Clegg had already made up his mind and that most of the to-ing and fro-ing and allowing himself to be courted by Labour was for show. Clegg was ready to jump into bed with Dave and the act of stringing Labour along was purely PR to appease those Lib Dems who are positioned to his left.
That Cameron would concede the post of Deputy PM to the leader of a party that holds less than ten percent of all parliamentary seats shows just how much he would sacrifice, to get the power he had assumed would be his. In fact, the number of Lib Dems holding Cabinet positions is extraordinary. The Lib Dems hold five of the senior Cabinet posts, that's more than twenty percent of seats at the Cabinet table.
So, less than ten percent of parliamentary seats control more than twenty percent of the Cabinet. Plus, when Cameron takes his paternity leave, our acting PM will be the leader of a party that actually reduced its mandate to be in the Commons at the election and has just under 9% of total MPs.
One must acknowledge that this has been an enormous achievement for Clegg. To take his party, that let's face it, has some policies sitting to the left of Labour, and to be able to reach an agreement with a party that is at the opposite end of the spectrum on core issues such as Trident, reveals that either Nick Clegg is a fearsome negotiator, or that he, like Cameron, had his eye fixed firmly on the prize of power.
For a party that has long aimed for coalition as their foothold on power, Clegg has more than delivered. This isn't the sliver of power that they hoped for, this is a mighty wedge and if his party can live with forever being remembered as Tory bedfellows, Clegg has done them proud. It has at least proven one of the pre-election warnings from Labour: "Vote Lib Dem, get Tory!" and has done so with style.
There are many commentators predicting how long this coalition will last. I will not be dragged into timescales, I do wonder though, how long it will be before Cameron begins to resent the amount he has given and how much this has emasculated him in the eyes of the electorate. For during the courtship of this ultimate marriage of convenience it was very obviously Clegg who wore the trousers. Now he has moved into Number 10, it won't be long before Cameron wants them back.