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The Tories after 1997
Editors: and

The Conservative Party's survival as a significant political force was now open to serious question for the first time since the crisis over the Corn Laws. The Labour Party has commanded a fairly consistent level of attention, whether in office or in opposition. But it seems that the Conservatives are fated to be regarded either as unavoidable or irrelevant. This book presents an analysis that suggests that the party leader plays a less important role in Conservative recoveries than a distinctive policy programme and an effective party organization. It examines the Conservative position on a series of key issues, highlighting the difficult dilemmas which confronted the party after 1997, notably on economic policy. New Labour's acceptance of much of the main thrust of Thatcherite economic policy threw the Conservatives off balance. The pragmatism of this new position and the 'In Europe, not run by Europe' platform masked a significant move towards Euro-skepticism. The book also traces how the Scottish Conservative and Unionist Parties adapted to the creation of the Scottish Parliament, exploring the re-organisation of the Scottish party, its electoral fortunes and political prospects in the new Scottish politics. It examines issues of identity and nationhood in Conservative politics in the 1997-2001 period, focusing on the 'English Question' and the politics of 'race'. The predictable results of the Conservatives' failure to develop an attractive, consistent narrative are then analysed. Right-wing populist parties with charismatic leaders enjoyed some electoral success under the proportional representation systems in 2002.

Open Access (free)
Mark Garnett
Philip Lynch

new Scottish politics. In Chapter 10, Philip Lynch examines issues of identity and nationhood in Conservative politics in the 1997–2001 period, focusing on the ‘English Question’ and the politics of ‘race’. Hague pledged to redress the perceived inequities of New Labour’s devolution settlement by introducing the idea of ‘English votes for English laws’ at Westminster, but he resisted suggestions that the Conservatives should support the creation of an English Parliament. Hague spoke positively of the contributions made to British life by ethnic minority communities

in The Conservatives in Crisis
Fiona Simpkins

to survive in the new Scottish political landscape and started a debate within the party itself over its relationship with the British Labour Party. Despite the small rebound in the number of seats held by Scottish Labour after the 2017 general election, the party appears to have lost its grip on the Scottish electorate. The downward spiral of Scottish Labour’s electoral scores since the introduction of devolution to Scotland has not only strained the relationship between the Scottish party and the parliamentary party in London but also questioned its very

in Labour united and divided from the 1830s to the present
Abstract only
Traces of a regional political class in Catalonia and Scotland
Klaus Stolz

Leitbilder subsumed under the ill-defined notion of a ‘new Scottish politics’ simply did not accept political professionalisation for what it is – an irreversible macro-trend closely related to democratisation. For indeed, many of the consequences of political professionalisation are quite positive, especially if compared with possible alternatives. The longterm, full-time and fully paid politicians who occupy the seats of the Scottish Parliament may not be the mirror image of Scottish society, nor do they come cheap. Yet are they better or worse than political amateurs

in Towards a regional political class?
Alan Convery

their understanding of unionism with a sense that Scottish (political and policy) identity could only be fully preserved and enhanced through new Scottish political institutions. Thus, as Mitchell (1990: 12) argues, ‘The problem for unionism has been that, in maintaining a distinctive Scottish aspect, the danger always existed that a demand to incorporate a democratic component would be made or even that the Union should be abandoned. [For Conservatives] the defence of the Union comes first, before the retention of the Scottish aspect whenever the question is put.’ In

in The territorial Conservative Party
A regional political class for itself
Klaus Stolz

, the involvement of civic society in the political process as well as improved forms of public participation. The visions of a new Scottish politics thus contained a strong element directed against the monopolisation of the political process by professional politicians. The Scottish critique of the Westminster democracy clearly influenced the institutional set-up of regional self-government in Scotland. Yet it is important to remember that its normative base – the Scotland Act of 1998 – was ratified at Westminster and it incorporated the fundamental logic of the UK

in Towards a regional political class?