It is the people of Eastleigh, the constituency's voters who were the most important thing in the by-election. Not the by-election candidates.
The result entirely changes the public perception of Ukip. You have to be bold and you have to be brave to fight from the sidelines and come out swinging. The media, hugely loyal to their party of choice, will seek to destroy you. All the other parties will not hesitate to club together to attack. The underdog became a threat to them all.
The sensible advice to the Tories after Eastleigh is, of course, 'Don't Panic'. The problem, however, is they already have. Indeed, they've been panicking about Ukip for well over a year now - which is precisely why they've ended up in this mess in the first place.
Small political earthquake in Hampshire - that's that tone of much of the commentary about the Eastleigh by election on Friday. And it's fair comment too. So what are the key lessons from the poll? I believe there are four.
What significant numbers of voters in Italeigh have in common is a profound sense that conventional politicians have let them down. They lie, they cheat, they make promises that they have no intention of keeping - and, most seriously, they preside over a collapse in living standards that throws thousands of people out of work and creates real, palpable misery.
This week we have the opportunity to focus aid discussions on what really matters: quality not quantity.
A decade has passed since the eruption of brutal violence and conflict in Darfur. In these 10 years, 300,000 people died and three million people were displaced from their homes, fleeing horrifying atrocities.
Workfare is not only bad economics it is morally wrong. Workfare is a modern form of slavery. This may seem an extreme statement, for we tend to associate slavery with racial oppression, when black people were forced to work for white farmers. But slavery is not always racial and it is not always achieved by violence.
We acknowledge that most people are hostile to quotas, but if we want real change they are the only mechanism proven to deliver. Quotas are not the electoral risk that some activists suggest.
Mrs Mountable writes: I see the issue of banter in word and deed, otherwise known as, so called, work based, sexual harassment has raised it's head in the news again. The time has come for me to speak on this issue as there are several girls utterly missing the point on this issue.
The reason the Tory candidate is struggling is not because of Ukip. It's because Tory voters in Eastleigh are increasingly aware that the party is no longer what they purport to be. To all intents and purposes, David Cameron is a social democrat.
The Lord Rennard affair is in many ways the perfect PR crisis, combining as it does what appear to be genuine operational problems with an undeniable failure to communicate these problems in a coherent or open manner.
If anyone sees a female Lib Dem MP can they let us know? Given that there are only seven women out of the 56 Lib Dems in the Commons, it is rather conspicuous that only one of them has spoken publicly about the allegations against Lord Rennard.
Crisis communications, whether political or corporate, have changed massively in recent years. Twenty-four hour rolling news, blogs and now Twitter mean that speed is critical, and leaving a vacuum - even for a few hours - can see a story escalate rapidly beyond manageable means.
It's time the gag was lifted on straight talking and a real representative voice in politics spoke on behalf of the people. This is what Ukip represents. When you meet people, like I did, who say they haven't voted for thirty years but they are going to the election box to vote Ukip, you know you are on to the right thing.
So whatever the truth about the Rennard allegations, Nick Clegg is doomed. Regardless of the circumstances, the media will make sure that he suffers.