Is the UK Prime Minister now effectively a president?

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Is the UK Prime Minister now effectively a president?

Since 1997 it had been argued that prime ministers have become presidential. However, in recent years, Brown and Cameron, have adopted a different leadership style which moves away from that of 'president-like' prime ministers. The key difference between a president and a prime minister was summed up by Bagehot when he described the role of a prime minister to be 'primus inter pares'. This means that traditionally the prime minister held all the power in government whilst still ensuring that all cabinet members equally influenced key decisions made. Although, that may have changed over the years.

Previous Prime Minister have shown similar traits displayed by US presidents. One of those features is the growth of spatial leadership and presidential leadership style. This suggests that these leaders deliberately make themselves outsiders within government. This is so that they can become independent but also stay as part of government. This was displayed by Thatcher and Blair. Thatcher in fact criticised the government which she was the head of. Blair had his core executives, also known as the 'sofa government', which made more decisions without consulting all the cabinet members and worked with individual members, during bilateral meetings. Proving that 10 Downing Street increasingly reflects the inner circle of the presidential White House.

As Prime minister cannot officially become head of state, they increasingly assume the stature of a presidential-style head of state. This is seen during Blair's leadership during the G8 and EU in 2005. This relationship with Bush and Clinton allowed him to strike an overly presidential pose. Therefore, it can be argued that prime ministers are becoming more like US presidents and becoming national leaders, which is actually the job of the monarch.

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Another factor that shows that the prime ministers is becoming more like a president is through the prime ministers increasingly acting like a representative of the nation. This is usually over security or a national crisis. In recent events, David Cameron visited Scotland to represent the country in the debate over whether the North Sea Oil will belong to Scotland, if they are to become independent after the 2014 Referendum. Blair also showed this characteristic by initiating the 'Good Friday Agreement' with Northern Ireland and the ROI. Foreign affairs have become more important and have been dominated by ...

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