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Since Thatcher, no PM has been able to dominate their cabinet Watch

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    Since Thatcher, no PM has been able to dominate their cabinet, and their agenda over the country like her- with Blair coming close, although not to the same degree?

    Thoughts
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    (Original post by adam9317)
    Since Thatcher, no PM has been able to dominate their cabinet, and their agenda over the country like her- with Blair coming close, although not to the same degree?

    Thoughts
    Agreed although the cabinet did overthrow Maggie in the end.
    Blair did come close but I'd say Thatcher's dominance over her cabinet until just before the end is unrivaled in these modern times.
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    I'd say the 79-86 and 97-03 periods were pretty similar with Blair and Thatcher essentially free to do as they pleased. Thatcher's end was much slower and less dramatic than Blair's fairly quick fall from grace.
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    (Original post by Rakas21)
    I'd say the 79-86 and 97-03 periods were pretty similar with Blair and Thatcher essentially free to do as they pleased. Thatcher's end was much slower and less dramatic than Blair's fairly quick fall from grace.
    What do you reckon would have happened had Blair still been Labour leader for the 2010 election? Fared much better?
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    (Original post by Rakas21)
    I'd say the 79-86 and 97-03 periods were pretty similar with Blair and Thatcher essentially free to do as they pleased. Thatcher's end was much slower and less dramatic than Blair's fairly quick fall from grace.
    You've got those two the wrong way round. Thatcher's end was the most dramatic end I've seen in politics and was basically a political earthquake.

    A senior Cabinet Minister (Geoffrey Howe) resigned making a speech that was basically a direct call to others to challenge her, saying she wasn't suited to being leader and then she was directly challenged in a leadership contest with another former big name Cabinet Minister (Michael Hestletine) who had quit Cabinet in a bust up with her four years ago.

    That was worthy of a box set drama.

    Blair's end was one of behind the scenes move to undermine him with 'off the record' briefings against him from Brownites who professed slavish loyalty to him in public. In the end Blair found it an unworkable arrangement and announced his resignation but on his own terms, ie he would leave in a year's time.

    Also for Thatcher, between 1979 and 1983, especially up till 1981, she didn't really dominate her Cabinet, it was more consensual. It was post 1983 election and especially post 1987 where she became dominant, although from 1989 onwards she fought battles that were too big for her, ie against Nigel Lawson and Geoffrey Howe, who were almost as big personalities as she was.
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    (Original post by Bornblue)
    What do you reckon would have happened had Blair still been Labour leader for the 2010 election? Fared much better?
    Cameron copied all of Tony's popular choices to get into power- If it wasn't for the Iraq war 2005 and 2010 would have been Labour Landslide wins
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    (Original post by adam9317)
    Since Thatcher, no PM has been able to dominate their cabinet, and their agenda over the country like her- with Blair coming close, although not to the same degree?

    Thoughts
    Is this a good thing?
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    (Original post by M14B)
    Is this a good thing?
    Its really something to get people talking; personally I think it is!
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    (Original post by Bornblue)
    What do you reckon would have happened had Blair still been Labour leader for the 2010 election? Fared much better?
    I don't think Blair would have run for another term. Most likely he would have planned to hand over the reins around that time: maybe Brown would have been the next leader but maybe by then it would have been a bit late for Brown and one of the next generation like David Miliband would have been better placed to run for the leadership.

    I think in the context of the financial crisis etc, the result would have been close but most likely Labour being the largest party but needing to go in to coalition with the Lib Dems.
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    I believe this is actually an intentional act on the part of recent Prime Ministers (although obviously the nature of the personalities around the table might have some influence). I believe Blair for example was more than capable of acting like Thatcher w.r.t his cabinet if he wanted to. He didn't though because it wasn't much in keeping this his 'third way' politics, which he tried to paint as more collaborative and involved. He was criticised as being too 'presidential' (acting unilterally) on a number of occasions though.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk...y-8004558.html

    I think he also was the source of the whole 'kitchen cabinet' thing, where he'd take time to discuss things informally with ministers privately (famously in No 10's kitchen).



    Gordon Brown potentially lacked the authority of Blair, has the party was not voted on with him as prospective Prime Minister. That could be a likely source of his need to be more inclusive to cabinet members on issues, because he didn't have as much of a personal mandate and therefore cabinet members could be more empowered in their views.

    Cameron's coalition government is the same story really. Compromise was the supposed mantra of this government and therefore there couldn't really be any outright domination for fear of a more.. fractious outcome. Along with that I just don't think it's Cameron's style. He lacks the force of personality of Blair or Thatcher, and I imagine he probably deliberates on multiple points of views in order to come to a decision, unlike someone with strong self-evident opinions like Thatcher.
 
 
 
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