Conservative party

The forward march of party members: has the shift in power to the grassroots gone too far?

The forward march of party members: has the shift in power to the grassroots gone too far?

Patrick Seyd writes that while parliamentarians are in a much better position to decide who should lead the party than party members, in recent years the balance has shifted in favour of the latter. This plebiscitary politics negatively affects both the quality of political leadership and of decision-making.

Criticisms of the Westminster model of politics are not new: can the system survive the latest  wave of anti-politics?

Criticisms of the Westminster model of politics are not new: can the system survive the latest wave of anti-politics?

Criticisms of the highly centralised, elitist, top-down Westminster model are by no means new. Consecutive Prime Ministers – from Blair to May – vowed to take on vested powers and interests, challenge the status quo, and change the way politics is conducted. Yet, as Patrick Diamond, David Richards, and Alan Wager show, they have all failed to deliver their promises. While another wave of anti-politics is looming, they ask how the established parties will accommodate it.

What does Boris Johnson’s political record tell us about his prospects as Prime Minister?

What does Boris Johnson’s political record tell us about his prospects as Prime Minister?

As Conservative MPs whittle the contest to be next leader of the party – and so next Prime Minister – down to a final two who will face the party membership, Ben Worthy assesses the record of the clear frontrunner, Boris Johnson, and what his time as London Mayor and Foreign Secretary indicate about his aptitude for the top job.

Tough and tender: the winning formula for the next Prime Minister

Tough and tender: the winning formula for the next Prime Minister

Eleven Conservative MPs are currently running to succeed Theresa May. Whoever emerges from this contest as the next Prime Minister, they will need to have the human and technical skills to tackle both the emotional divisions of the country and the challenges of Brexit, writes Tony Hockley.

Behind the scenes of the Conservative–Liberal Democrat Coalition

Behind the scenes of the Conservative–Liberal Democrat Coalition

The UK’s Coalition government of 2010–15 was established with an array of formal agreements and rules for cooperation. However, finds Felicity Matthews, the informal norms and micro-level practices of individual relationships were critical to its operation. This opens up a new area in research, which focuses on the detailed practices of multi-party governance. 

Why Boris Johnson is wrong about the Irish border (again)

Why Boris Johnson is wrong about the Irish border (again)

Former Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson has, once again, intervened in the Brexit debate about concerns over a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. Sean Swan explains how Johnson has misrepresented the problem, and why the border question is of such symbolic ­and physical importance.

England’s local elections 2018: Theresa May holds on, but the Conservatives remain on the precipice

England’s local elections 2018: Theresa May holds on, but the Conservatives remain on the precipice

The results for England’s local elections on 3 May indicate that the Conservatives and Labour parties remain neck and neck for national vote share. Ben Margulies argues that, though Theresa May has been more successful in local elections then elsewhere in her premiership, the Conservatives remain in a precarious position, with no easy path to regaining a majority.

Same difference? Female (and male) members of Britain’s political parties

Same difference? Female (and male) members of Britain’s political parties

A recent report by the Party Membership Project run by Monica Poletti, Tim Bale and Paul Webb has shown how the membership of Britain’s main political parties is more like to be male, middle aged and middle class. The results of this survey were explored in a discussion with several leading female MPs, which highlighted common concerns about party behaviours, class and gender barriers that reinforce these disparities in participation.

From City Hall to Downing Street: what would Boris as Mayor tell us about Boris as PM?

From City Hall to Downing Street: what would Boris as Mayor tell us about Boris as PM?

As speculation mounts again about Theresa May’s longevity at Prime Minister, Boris Johnson’s star has risen once again. But what would PM Boris be like? Ben Worthy and Mark Bennister read the runes from his time as London’s Mayor.

Corbyn’s rent controls: radical new housing policy, or just rhetoric?

Corbyn’s rent controls: radical new housing policy, or just rhetoric?

If there is one thing that Labour and Conservatives currently have in common, it is that both appear ready to embark on a step change in housing policy. But are Jeremy Corbyn’s recent announcements on rent controls a sign of change, or just another new political language for ‘masterly inactivity’? Ben Pattison (Sheffield Hallam University) reviews Labour’s […]