The party leaders are reluctant to talk about what they might do if none of them wins a clear majority on Thursday. But, as keen students of political history, they know the half-forgotten secrets of coalitions, minority governments, pacts and haggling over electoral reform that may come into play on Friday. Such dilemmas were common in the 19th century, but 20th-century Britain faced them at least once a generation.
Tony Blair was warned on the eve of war by his intelligence chiefs that an invasion of Iraq would increase the danger of terrorist attacks, which they considered by far the greatest threat to western interests. The warning is disclosed in a report by parliament's intelligence committee which contains fresh criticism of the dossier on Iraq's banned weapons programme which the government used to make its case for action against Iraq.
Of all the depressing details which emerged about politicians' expenses this week the one which troubled me most was not Jacqui Smith's 88p bath plug or Sinn Féin trousering nearly £500,000 in MPs' housing allowance from their British oppressors. No, it was the claim that Tony Blair was paid €200,000 – roughly £180,000 at current exchange rates – for a half-hour speech in the Philippines. Twice. I'm told the figure is "greatly exaggerated", as such figures often are.
Muck Rack makes it simple to find people, tweets, or articles that mention any name, keyword, company, hashtag etc. We've compiled this guide to help you make the most of your search.
Selecting a term
Start searching tweets, articles from media outlets, articles mentioned in tweets, journalists'
names, titles and bios with some suggested searches:
Companies or Topics (e.g. iPhone, Microsoft)
Phrases (e.g. "cloud computing") — use quotes to keep the terms together
Twitter handles (e.g. @username) — returns those who have mentioned or replied to
Names (e.g. "David Pogue")
Hashtags (e.g. #sxsw, #london2012)
Bio details (e.g. vegan, Olympics, father)
Muck Rack's Advanced Search allows for many boolean operators.
Find results that mention multiple specified terms, use AND or
+. For example, ensure each result contains both Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg by
searching Obama AND Romney or Obama + Romney.
Use the operators OR or , to broaden your search when you'd like either of
multiple terms to appear in results. (This is the default behavior of our search when no operators
are used.) For example, search for democrat OR republican to find results that refer to
Democrats and/or Republicans.
Use NOT or - to subtract results from your search. For
example, searching Disney will yield results about the Walt Disney Company as well as Walt Disney
World Resort. To exclude mentions of Disney World, search for Disney -World or Disney
When using one of these operators with a phrase, enclose it in quotation marks. For example, you can
find results about smartphones excluding Apple's iPhone 4S by searching smartphone -"iPhone
Exact case matching or punctuation
If you're searching for a brand name or keyword that relies on specific punctuation marks or capitalization, you can
find results that match your exact query by adding matchcase: before the keyword you're searching for, like matchcase:E*TRADE .
Use parentheses to separate multiple
boolean phrases. For example, to find journalists talking about having fun in Disney World or
Disneyland, search for ("disney world" OR disneyland) AND fun.
An asterisk can be used to search for any variation of a root word truncated by the asterisk. For example, searching for admin* will return results for administrator, administration, administer, administered, etc.
A near operator is an AND operator where you can control the distance between the words. You can vary the distance the near operation uses by adding a forward slash and number (between 0-99) such as strawberries NEAR/10 "whipped cream", which means the strawberries must exist within 10 words of "whipped cream".