It is perhaps telling that there were no big, last-minute fights over the content of this reassuringly dull Budget. The bulk of it was wrapped up more than a week ago.
Given December’s Pre-Budget report was still being negotiated in the early hours of the morning, this is quite a feat. This time Ed Balls’ emissaries weren’t on the phone at 3am arguing about the GDP deflator. Darling and his team managed to get some sleep, which is not something chancellors on Budget day are used to.
There were also no great fights with No 10, although some argie-bargie over bungs and giveaways was inevitable. Apparently the last thing to be sorted were the lending targets with the bankers, another profession used to squabbling over numbers late into the night.