A vote against corruption. A pro-Congress wave. An anti-BJP mandate. We have had much instant punditry since the Karnataka assembly election results came in. Much of it is not persuasive when one looks at the changes in share of the popular vote.The Congress vote share went up by just 1.8 percentage points over 2008. That of the BJP declined by 14 percentage points of which 10 percentage points went to the Yeddyurappa faction. This, of course, suggests that if the BJP can mend fences with Yeddyurappa, it can do better next time.
Also, as Vidya Subrahmanyam points out in the Hindu, the BJP's share of the vote in 2008 of 33.86% was less than the Congress' share of 34.76% but that did not prevent the BJP from getting the largest number of seats.
Splits and alliances, rather than issues of corruption and governance or even incumbency, appear to be the decisive factor, as in so many other elections.Who gets the alliance combination right may matter more ultimately in the general elections of 2014 than, say Raga versus Namo.