• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How can Coalition government affect the traditions of the Cabinet system?

Extracts from this document...


How can Coalition government affect traditions of the Cabinet system? "Yes! I know what I have to face. I have to face a coalition. The combination may be successful. Coalitions, although successful, have always found this, that their triumph has been brief. This too I know that England does not love coalitions." Benjamin Disraeli (1804-1881) This is a quotation of famous statesman B. Disraeli taken from the speech in House of Commons in 1851. It mainly states that coalitions between parties can be successful but for a short-term as it leads to significant changes. Historically, the Cabinet is the most powerful decision-making body of the United Kingdom and has certain rules and traditions. Since the last general election provided a Coalition Government, two-party government, which is quite unusual for Britain, there have been made a range of reforms and changes in order to adapt new government to habitual style. This essay will outline in what way and how the coalition government has affected the Cabinet, by analysing and discussing the main features of Coalition government, the Prime Minister's power, Cabinet and its' traditions (Lowe, C., Owen, V. et al., 2010). In order to do this it is useful to define what a Coalition government is. ...read more.


Another important feature is the Cabinet Committees which are also the part of the Cabinet. Originally, Committees were created to reduce the workload of the Cabinet and are strictly classified. Regular meetings between the Prime Minister and secretary are held in Cabinet Committees, called bilateral meetings. Decisions made there have the same power as decisions made in the Cabinet (Lowe, C., Owen, V. et al., 2010). Overall, creation of the Coalition Government was perceived ambiguously and variously commented. "A kind of cross between a bulldog and a Chihuahua" or "They have created a mongrel breed" as it was said by Conservative mayor of London Boris Johnson. (Stratton, A and Booth, B 2010) Since the Coalition between Conservatives and Liberal Democrats was created several changes has been made inside and outside the Cabinet. Firstly, with the Deputy Prime Minister the "first among equals" concept of the Prime Minister becomes in some extend controversial, mainly because the Prime Minister's party now has to find a "common ground" with the party they cooperating. For instance, David Cameron has to negotiate with Nick Clegg about all main decisions and plans. Sometimes negotiations end without a common agreement or compromise. For instance, one of the major disagreements between both sides was the question about nuclear power subsidizing, which could split Tories and Liberal Democrats (BBC News 2010). ...read more.


It is useful to mention about all reforms in Cabinet Committees made and a creation of a Coalition Committee, which was formed in order to consider issues relating to the operation of the Coalition. As well as the Prime minister the Deputy Prime Minister now also has to attend regular Committee meetings. In other words all committees now are co-chaired by two leaders. Therefore traditional "Bilateral meetings" has taken a new shape (CabinetOffice.gov.uk, 2010). To sum up, there are a range of rules and traditions of the Cabinet Government that have been settled over the long time. These are the doctrine of Collective Responsibility, collegiality and secrecy in the Cabinet, the status of the Prime Minister, being "primus inter pares" as well as a public figure, the Prime Minister's traditional powers, such as patronage power. However with the creation of Coalition Government many of these traditions have changed and reformed. In Coalition, the Prime Minister has to negotiate many decisions with Deputy Prime Minister which weakens his status and powers; there also have to be equality inside the Cabinet between two parties, reshuffle of Cabinet Ministers and appointment of extra. Therefore transformation of Cabinet is considered to take place. Back to the quotation of Benjamin Disraeli, the Coalition Government may be successful in many ways, but it also replaces the old traditions of the Cabinet and creates new and unusual governing style. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level United Kingdom section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level United Kingdom essays

  1. Government & Politics Revision Notes

    However, it ha not completed the reforms of the house of Lords and appears to be resisting an elected second chamber, some say the government now has a greater say over who sits in the lords. Fifth, the government have introduced the Human Rights Act, which for the first time sets out clearly the rights citizens enjoy.

  2. Prime Minister & the Cabinet

    This means he plays a major role in the outcome of the decisions made by these two government functions. As national leader the Prime ministers responsibilities include setting up his/her own government which he/she will be required to lead and coordinate.

  1. Unit 1 - Example of Evaluations

    I feel my timing and organisation skills let me down on this task, and is something I looked to correct for the other documents that I produced. What would I do differently if I had to do a similar task in the future As mentioned I would look to rectify

  2. Constitution and Politics

    It has legal right but not political ability. Pressure groups, public view, major trading partners, International bodies such as the EU all have constraints on political soverengty. Increase in referendums: shift from parliamentary sovereignty to popular sovereignty May not be legally sovereign: EU Law supersedes UK Law * As it is unwritten it is flexible and easy to

  1. What is the main reason for the loss of faith and interest in our ...

    The answer is almost certainly yes, as the people deserve to know the facts about the people who their taxes are paying for, just as the people deserve to know about those who commit crimes, and those who commit benefit fraud in particular, which is another big paper seller.

  2. Is it true to say that the UK now features Prime Ministerial rather than ...

    However as we look back at past leaders, we see quite a considerable change between the styles of Thatcher and her predecessor John Major, who ran the country from 1990-97 in a very different, almost opposite way. When Major came to power in 1990, he took a very different view

  1. Laurier Evaluation

    A lot of thought was taken into this decision which was intended so that neither the French nor the English felt their thoughts and wants were not taken into consideration. His decision sharpened the controversy between the two nationality groups regarding Canada's proper responsibilities to Britain in the future.

  2. To what extent have the parties involved in the Conservative- Liberal Democrat coalition remained ...

    This policy comes under the 'Big Society', which has been seen by some as a way promoting more community assistance and spirit, but has been described by others a spending cuts in disguise. The Conservatives have also been successful in their introduction of reduced taxation.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work