The Evening Standard says Brown has resigned as PM, after the collapse of Lib-Lab talks. Politics Home relays that "the prime minister's spokesman denies Gordon Brown has resigned." James Forsyth reports:

The Lib Dems are holding a meeting of both their MPs and the Federal Executive at 7.30pm. It is now widely expected that this meeting will approve a coalition deal with the Conservatives. Those who have taken the temperature of the Lib Dem Federal Executive say that approval is in the bag.

Then this:

George Pascoe-Watson, the respected former political editor of the Sun, reports that the Lib Dems have six cabinet posts and Nick Clegg will become deputy prime minister. If so, the outsiders have won far more ground than anyone imagined possible and the landscape of British politics has changed - perhaps forever.

The FT is live-blogging. If this pans out, it's a huge achievement for the Tory negotiators. To construct a fiscally responsible Tory-Lib coalition government under this kind of pressure cannot have been easy.  And AV would not make one-party government impossible in the future but would make the system fairer. It also gives the Liberals a chance to prove their governing mettle.

So in one day, the prospect of a permanent left-of-center future for Britain has shifted to the possibility of a Whiggish Toryism emerging as a vital, stabilizing force for the coming weeks, months and maybe years. Amazing. I'm still trying to absorb it all.

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