Tory Leadership Contests

Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales), June 9, 2005 | Go to article overview

Tory Leadership Contests


It was a bravura performance. Iain Duncan Smith, the self-styled 'quiet man' of British politics, turned up the volume to tell party critics, 'I won't quit.'

The 2003 Conservative leader's conference speech netted 14 standing ovations - some of which were not even orchestrated.

'Wonderful speech,' declared one senior Conservative MP. 'Of course, he'll be gone by Christmas,' he added gleefully.

And he was.

For sheer intrigue, brutality, and, yes, frequency you cannot beat a Tory leadership contest.

Fifteen years on from the most stunning coup of all, the Conservative Party is still struggling to come to terms with the seismic toppling of Margaret Thatcher.

At the time, getting rid of a Tory leader, even one with three election victories under her belt, was a straightforward process.

Party rules allowed for an annual election provided a challenger could secure a proposer and seconder.

In November 1989 such a challenge emerged in the shape of pro-European stalking horse Sir Anthony Meyer.

The Prime Minister survived, but 60 MPs refused to back her and by 1990 the plotters were closing in.

In round one of the leadership vote, Baroness Thatcher easily beat challenger Michael Heseltine, by 204 votes to 152, but it was not enough to stave off a second ballot.

The Prime Minister defiantly marched out of the Paris Summit to declare she would 'fight on' but, stunned by a series of meetings with Cabinet colleagues, a shell-shocked leader left office in tears.

Shamed Tory MPs sought to assuage their guilt by killing off the chances of the chief assassin, leaving Heseltine out in the cold with contender Douglas Hurd.

Thatcher anointed John Major as 'one of us' but, in doing so, set the Tories on the path of the pathologically ungovernable.

Major led the party to an unlikely fourth election victory (with the highest number of votes achieved in a general election, before or since), secured vital concessions for Britain in Europe, took us into the first Gulf War and, eventually, bought inflation to its lowest level in 30 years. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Tory Leadership Contests
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.