Archive for the ‘David Cameron’ Category

The struggling economy presents the new PM with an electoral teaser

Amid talk of a snap election, could Boris Johnson or Jeremy Hunt do what John Major did in 1992?

The new prime minister could hardly have chosen a worse moment to enter Downing Street. Growth had stalled, there was serious trouble in the Middle East, the government’s flagship policy had made it deeply unpopular. Yet at the next general election, the Conservative party won an overall majority against all the odds.

That was how things panned out for John Major after he took over from Margaret Thatcher in late 1990. The economy had just entered a recession that resulted in record bankruptcies and home repossessions; oil prices were soaring after Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait; and Britain had been convulsed by a summer of poll tax riots. The economy actually got a lot worse during the course of 1991 but Major still won in April 1992.

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