ON Tuesday, British politics changed in a way none of us could have imagined and which most of us have barely grasped.
It was very clear to all of us during the election campaign that voters liked the idea of politicians working together and that they were tired of 'Punch and Judy politics’.
It was obvious that following the election results the only stable, lasting arrangement would be a coalition either between Labour and the Lib Dems or the Conservatives and the Lib Dems.
It became obvious during Tuesday that there was considerable opposition to a Lab-Lib coalition – partly from within Labour but also not helped by the fact that Labour and the Lib Dems would not be a majority in the House of Commons.
Major figures in the Labour party signalled their hostility to a Lab-Lib coalition, undermining negotiations.
Had success been achieved in forming a Lab-Lib Dem coalition though, the Scottish Nationalists, Conservatives and Unionists would have been able to out-vote such a government.
Given all that, the Lib Dems and Conservative negotiating teams therefore tried to conclude their attempt to get an agreement and did.
Much as I find it both strange and difficult to imagine Lib Dems and Tories working together in a coalition, I also note that the coalition agreement includes huge chunks of the parts of Lib Dem policy that appeal to most voters and drops parts of Tory policy that are unacceptable.
I am frankly amazed at the concessions the Tories made.