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PC2: Resignation of Margaret Thatcher/Tory Leadership
How do you feel about Maggie going? And what are your thoughts on her replacements?
Margaret was a lot of things to a lot of people. Like any great figure from history, she had her staunch supporters and her vicious critics. When the dust settles, I believe that an evenhanded analysis of her time as Prime Minister will reveal that she has achieved more for Britain than any other Prime Minister since Churchill. That is not to say that she has not put a foot wrong: the Community Charge has been a failure both in its inception and implementation, a sabre-rattling approach to Europe has left Britain somewhat ostracized in the EEC, and, perhaps most significantly, her leadership has left some deep divisions in our party and our country. If the Conservative Party is going to avoid the onset of more wilderness years, then our new leader must transcend wet-and-dry division. I am running to lead this party because I believe that I have the plan and the temperament to heal the divisions in our party, and to get everyone moving in the same direction again. Only then can we, as Conservatives, begin to lead the country the way it needs to be led.
I am deeply saddened to see Mrs Thatcher step down. She has been a great inspiration to me and an icon of this party, and she will be solely missed. Whoever succeeds her will have a hard time filling her shoes and it is my hope that whoever does succeed her will continue to honour and develop on her legacy.

That is why I have announced my candidacy for the leadership of the Conservative party, to continue the great works that Mrs. Thatcher started. She changed what it meant to be a Conservative and made a massive amount of people more prosperous. I am unashamed of my support for Mrs. Thatcher and her ideas and I can only express regret that the snakes in the grass managed to cause her downfall.
“Rest assured I won’t be losing a second of sleep at night knowing that Thatcher is out of Number 10, but her resignation isn’t much cause to celebrate, yet. We’re living in her fantasy world right now after she and her Tory mates spent more than a decade assaulting the trade union movement- the basis of working class strength - knifing working communities throughout Britain with brutal cuts to public services, squeezing all she could from our industry before throwing it out, and condemning millions to precarity. Exploitation and alienation in a low wage, high unemployment economy are the foundation of her project to manufacture a deeply unequal economy free from the collective strength of the labour movement, all so that her banking and boss friends can enjoy the splendor of luxury in gilded mansions unfathomable to the rest of us. I’ll save my celebration for when I’m in the company of my working comrades in Sheffield once we have an unabashedly socialist Labour Government firmly committed to empowering the working class through the restoration of our industry under public ownership and dedication to worker ownership and participation. We must demand a world free from poverty, hunger, and despair and fight to rebuild the strength of the working class, of our trade union movement so that we may never return to the dark days of Thatcher and whichever bosses’ puppet the Tories name for two years and no more to replace her.”
Tommy Dawson
Labour MP for Sheffield Brightside (1979-Present)
Socialist Campaign Group. 9 XP. 15 Marx Visits. Media Darling, Campaign Guru, Issue Champ (Econ Equality)
Deputy Leader (1990-1992), Shadow Chancellor (1990-1992), The Most Dangerous Man in Britain (1992)
Mrs Thatcher will go down as one of the most impressive politicians of the 20th Century. The first female leader of the Conservative Party, the first female Leader of the Opposition, the first Female Prime Minister, the first Prime Minister to govern for more than ten years in the post-war period, three successive election victories, two landslide election victories, and millions helped by her policies. It is sad that it ended this way.
Nicholas Eden
MP for Vauxhall (1974/1 - Present)
News of the resignation of Prime Minister Thatcher is certainly met with mixed emotion. Without question, she has had an historic political career which is noteworthy; first female leader of the Conservative Party, first female Leader of the Opposition and the first female Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. But each of her historic firsts are unfortunately marred by the neo-liberal policies systematically implemented each and every moment she held the reigns of power which have had a devastating affecting on not just poor and needy families but every single aspect of our country. And let us not forget the reason the Prime Minister is leaving Downing Street, because it is the perfect embodiment of a political ideology gone horribly wrong: the poll tax and the wretched inability of her government to put themselves in the position-- let alone work for-- the poor and needy of our country. Her firsts will never stand over her damaged legacy in the history of the United Kingdom, we have not even begun to feel the full destruction of her backward policies and the next Conservative leader will be no different.
Kenneth Neil McIntyre
Labour MP (1983- )
Kilmarnok and Loudoun
So, a decade of Thatcherism ends, not with a bang, but with a fizzle. Now must be a time for reflection, not just in the Conservative Party, but across the nation - we need to be asking a fundamental question too. How can our politics be better after this, from what we have learned. Our first female Prime Minister, with a great reforming zeal, and a strong ideological desire for change; a free marketeer who slashed the welfare state and caused riots on our streets, as well as eliciting real hatred and division in communities across Britain. Before pen is put to paper in the history books, we should reflect.

The Conservatives, by their very nature, are not a party of change. That Mrs Thatcher has been able to drag them into becoming a party of change - however good, bad, or nuanced, likely not the former - is remarkable. It also leads me to believe that they may just about be capable of looking at our wider political system and seriously considering reform. That is what I hope the debate in the Conservatives centres around - reform, reflection, and change. If it does not, and descends into the bitter factional warfare that we have all come to expect, then the main loser will be the British public. Then again, the Tories have never shied away from making the public losers in their internal discussions.
Alex Cardigan MP
Deputy Prime Minister (1992-present)
Leader of the Liberal Democrats (1990-present) | MP for Montgomery (1983-present)
Former BBC Broadcaster | Liberal Party | XP: 20 | Issue Champion | Safe Pair of Hands
Margaret Thatcher was a great leader. While I have had certain disagreements with her about a couple of things, I am proud I can say I have always supported her. She has definitely changed the United Kingdom for the better. Now that she has decided to go, the obvious question is what course is the Conservative Party and the United Kingdom going to take.

My choice is clear. I endorse Errol George-Grosjean as a prospective leader of the Conservative Party. I firmly believe he is not going to betray the legacy of Margaret Thatcher, while at the same time having a new vision for both the party and the country. I am also positive that his intentions are good and honest and that he is a true conservative in a world that is slowly but surely abandoning the values and principles I have vowed to protect.
Vivian Beale
Conservative MP for Shoreham
(Monday Club / 0 XP)
Quite aside from the tributes and detractions to the outgoing Prime Minister - and I am sure you know on which side of that particular debate I fall - is the matter of what comes next. I hope the fall of the Prime Minister presages a reversal of the unfair, regressive poll tax that has hit communities in Scotland so harshly and callously. If the Tories are at all serious about learning from their mistakes, it must end. If they don't, then it's up to Labour to provide the compassionate, progressive alternative Britain deserves. With the towering figure of Margaret Thatcher gone, we must end that chapter in our history and open up the next.
the Rt Hon. Ruan Preston MP
Labour MP for Midlothian (1983-present)
Shadow Home Secretary (1990-1992; 1992-)
Progressive | Biography | 5 XP | Safe Pair of Hands

"The true purpose of democratic socialism and, therefore, the true aim of the Labour Party, is the creation of a genuinely free society, in which the fundamental objective of government is the protection and extension of individual liberty."
- Neil Kinnock and Roy Hattersley, Democratic Socialist Aims & Values
Margaret Thatcher will go down in history as the greatest peace time Prime Minister our country has ever known. All of us owe her an enormous debt, and I am deeply disappointed to see her go. It has a privilege to serve in her Cabinet, and I will always proudly consider myself a Thatcherite.

In 1979 our country required a visionary leader who recognized that new ideas were required if we were to make the most out of Britain's future. It is become I believe that we in 1990 once again require such a leader that I am emphatically backing Dylan Macmillan for the leadership of the Conservative Party. Once again, we find ourselves in a critical moment in the history of our nation. Communism is collapsing across Eastern Europe. Violence continues to rage on in Northern Ireland. Socialists here in our own country, desperate to reclaim power, are arguing more fervently than ever that Britain needs a return to nationalization. We need a leader who can seize upon this momentum and make a renewed case for freedom, free trade, and the free market. I am confident that the man for the job is Dylan Macmillan. 

I urge my colleagues in the Conservative Party, however you may have voted in the previous leadership ballot, join me in offering your vote to Mr. Macmillan. He is the leader our party needs, and the Prime Minister our country deserves.

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