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Is it true to say that the UK now features Prime Ministerial rather than Cabinet Government?'

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Introduction

'Is it true to say that the UK now features Prime Ministerial rather than Cabinet Government?' In order to answer this question we must look at the leading styles of the past Prime Ministers, and evaluate their individual techniques for running the government, and compare them to one another. The first person that we shall look at is Margaret Thatcher, the longest serving post-war Prime Minister who ran her government and lead the country for 11 straight years. Margaret Thatcher, or the Iron lady as she has since been labelled, was a very strong and positive leader, notoriously making decisions with little or no help from her Cabinet and colleagues. Her style of leadership was very much Prime Ministerial and worked very well for most of her time in power as you can tell for the amount of time that she was kept in, however it was also to be her downfall, and as she became stronger and stronger towards the end, possibly with a sense of invincibility and faith in her own decisions, both the country, and her cabinet grew more and more dis-gruntled with her over-powering forcefulness, and a string of unpopular decisions led to her demise. 1990 brought her the realisation of how people in general viewed her, after bringing each member of her cabinet into her office one by one and asking them individually whether they thought that she could stay in power. ...read more.

Middle

For the first term that he was in power, the return to the traditional method seemed like a welcome change from the forceful and dominant manner in which Thatcher had led, however it was his lack of conviction and dominance which was his downfall, and most argue that this was the main factor which led to his election defeat in 1997, however there were also other reasons and collectively his reign of power diminished and was subsequently handed over to Tony Blair with his New Labour Party. As we come to the end of Tony Blair's premiership, we can see the similarities in the way that he has run the government for the past 10 years, to that of both John Major, and Margaret Thatcher respectively. At first Blair seemed to collaborate the strengths of both of his predecessors, by keeping a strong cabinet of ministers with regular meetings and debates over policy decisions, however he also showed that he was strong enough to stand by the manifesto that had got him into power in the first place, and with the help of his seemingly overwhelming majority of 179, he was able to push most of his legislative programme through parliament in the first year alone. At the beginning of Blair's Premiership a lot of evidence can be found to support the theory that a more traditional Cabinet and leading Chief Executive Prime Minister partnership ...read more.

Conclusion

his premiership and the decisions and policies that were set we find a much more balanced and traditional style, although in my opinion it was never a Cabinet Government. After establishing that Blair has run his Government in a Prime Ministerial style, and even more prominently in the latter years with his introduction and use of more personal/special advisors, or Kitchen Cabinet as it has been dubbed, the question that presents itself is; what is the problem with a Prime Ministerial Government? The main argument is that the advisors that Blair filled number 10 with are not necessarily members of parliament, meaning they are helping the Prime Minister with decisions that will affect the whole country, when they haven't been elected by the people themselves. However it can be argued that the ministers who have been elected aren't as experienced or as qualified in the relevant fields as those that the Prime Minister can choose personally. It is also worth noting that the decisions made by the Prime Minister and his 'Kitchen Cabinet' will also have to be passed through Parliament, and should the policies completely lose touch with reality and start becoming absurd, the government will still have a certain amount of control with it's powers of restraint, and it's also worth taking into account that a Prime Minister can still be virtually forced out by his/her Cabinet, as we saw with John Major. ...read more.

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