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Conclusions
Conservatives and European reform
in The European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR)
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Chapter 7 concludes, attempting to sum up this first scholarly account of the European Conservatives and Reformists. The book aims to be an accessible but fine-grained introduction to ECR, the third largest group in the Parliament and its most prominent critical voice. Political science research looking into the way politicians – in this case, conservative politicians in Europe – try to influence political processes and achieve policy results can be useful for many reasons. Archival work carried out at Churchill College, Cambridge is also included in order to show that ECR’s activities are a continuation of British Conservatives’ attempts to reform the European integration process for decades – the cause of European reform has been synonymous with the Conservative Party since the 1970s. The chapter also looks to the future and analyses the prospects for the ECR group in the context of the 2019 European Parliament elections. There is every indication that the group will continue to function and operate in the European Parliament, despite many predictions of its demise, but its political philosophy may become less conservative and more nationalist due to a shift in balance of party membership.

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The European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR)

Politics, parties and policies

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