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Adversary or Consensus Politics?

  • Richard Rose

Abstract

The conventional model of British government assumes that parties are adversaries. The Conservative and Labour parties are meant to oppose each other in parliamentary debates and at general elections, and to govern the country differently when each has its turn in office. The consensus model of party government rejects each of these assumptions. The Conservative and Labour parties, while opposing each other in Parliament and in general elections, are expected to agree about the fundamentals of governance and not to differ substantially in their policies. When each succeeds the other in office, major policies are assumed to remain much the same.

Keywords

Consensus Model Labour Party Electoral Competition Adversary Model Conservative Party 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Notes

  1. 1.
    Bernard Crick, The Reform of Parliament (2nd ed.; London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1964), p. 245. Italics in the original.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    See R. M. Punnett, Front-Bench Opposition (London: Heinemann, 1973), chap. 6.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Quoted in D.E. Butler and Richard Rose, The British General Election of 1959 (London: Macmillan, 1960), pp. 32–33.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Introduction to Walter Bagehot, The English Constitution (London: World’s Classics ed., 1955), p. xxiv.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    For a discussion of the specific content of cultural consensus in England, see Richard Rose, Politics in England (3rd ed.; London: Faber & Faber, 1980), chap. 4.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    See D.E. Butler and Dennis Kavanagh, The British General Election of October, 1974 (London: Macmillan, 1975), pp. 286f. See also pp. 43–50, 122ff.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    See Peter Kellner, “Coalition,” Sunday Times, 14 May 1978.Google Scholar
  8. See R. Bassett, The Essentials of Parliamentary Democracy (London: Macmillan, 1935)Google Scholar
  9. D.E. Butler, ed., Coalitions in British Politics (London: Macmillan, 1978).Google Scholar
  10. 8.
    Godfrey Barker, “Mrs. Thatcher’s Team: Lord Carrington,” Daily Telegraph, 15 July 1978.Google Scholar
  11. 10.
    Joseph A. Schumpeter, Capitalism, Socialism and Democracy (4th ed.; London: Allen & Unwin, 1952), p. 291.Google Scholar
  12. 11.
    See D.E. Butler, “The Paradox of Party Difference,” in Studies in British Politics, ed. Richard Rose (3rd ed.; London: Macmillan, 1976).Google Scholar
  13. 12.
    See Richard Rose, “The Political Ideas of English Party Activists,” American Political Science Review 56, no. 2 (1962).Google Scholar
  14. 13.
    See Harold J. Laski, Parliamentary Government in England (London: Allen & Unwin, 1938), pp. 63, 93.Google Scholar
  15. 16.
    Michael Oakeshott, Political Education (Cambridge: Bowes & Bowes, 1951), p. II.Google Scholar
  16. 18.
    See D.E. Butler and Anthony S. King, The British General Election of 1966 (London: Macmillan, 1966), p. 5.Google Scholar
  17. 20.
    See Richard Rose, “Disciplined Research and Undisciplined Problems; International Social Science Journal 28, no. 1 (1976): 105ff.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Richard Rose 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • Richard Rose
    • 1
  1. 1.Centre for the Study of Public PolicyUniversity of StrathclydeUK

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