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The Prime Ministers' CraftWhy Some Succeed and Others Fail in Westminster Systems$
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Patrick Weller

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780199646203

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780199646203.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 20 January 2022

Prime Ministers, Party, and Parliament

Prime Ministers, Party, and Parliament

Chapter:
(p.180) 7 Prime Ministers, Party, and Parliament
Source:
The Prime Ministers' Craft
Author(s):

Patrick Weller

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780199646203.003.0007

If they are to keep their job, prime ministers need to maintain support in their party and a majority in the parliament. They need to actively work among their colleagues to keep them on side. In Britain rebellion on the floor of the House reflects the divisions within ruling parties. In the other three countries, prime ministers can be assured that their MPs will vote with them but they can be assailed in the weekly party room meeting where criticisms can be fierce and where dissenting views will be expressed directly to cabinet members. This chapter explores how prime minister intersect with their parliamentary supporters and the ways they try to ensure continued support. It examines the way prime ministers prepare for that setpiece drama, prime minister’s questions. It shows how different institutional arrangements ensured a range of strategies, not all successful, were needed.

Keywords:   Prime ministers, party meetings, parliament, question time, accountability

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