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Margaret Thatcher and her political career - Term Paper Example

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This paper tells that Margaret Thatcher was one of the most formidable politicians and prime ministers in the history of Britain.The policies of her government were directed at making Britain an environment that was free of government interference, especially when it came to economic matters. …
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Margaret Thatcher and her political career
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Download file to see previous pages The political career of the formidable Margaret Thatcher began in the voting of the year 1950 and 1951, when she ran for a parliamentary seat on a Conservative ticket. During these elections, she was not only the female candidate in the race, but she was also the youngest, at twenty-five; although she lost in both elections to the Labor party candidate, she managed to reduce significantly their majority in this constituency. Despite not being able to participate in the 1955 general elections, Thatcher, in the same year ran for the Orpington seat in a by-election in which she was also defeated, but in this case, the margin of defeat was quite narrow. This brought a realization that she could only win in a constituency where the Conservative party was downright dominant. To realize her ambition, she went looking for one such constituency, and consequently, she was selected to run as the Conservative candidate for Finchley, where she was elected Member of Parliament in the 1959 general elections.
She made her first speech when she defended her bill, which required members of the local authorities to hold their council meetings in public. She displayed her strong will and character by going against the official position of her party by voting for the restoration of birching, which was a form of corporal punishment using a birch rod. From the outset of her career in politics, she declared herself a friend of the Jewish community; moreover, she was not only a founding affiliate of a pro Jewish group in her constituency, but she was also a member of the pro-Jewish association of the conservative party. However, despite this friendship she was of the opinion that Israel had to give up some of the land it had occupied in order to bring peace in Palestine. Moreover, she considered some of the actions of the Israeli government, such as the bombing of Osirak, as a severe abuse of international law. In 1961, Thatcher was agreed an endorsement to the front bench by the Macmillan government of the time, and in this new capacity, she served as the Parliamentary Undersecretary at the Ministry of Pensions and National Insurance. However, when the Conservatives failed to win the elections in the voting of 1964, she developed into the spokesperson for Housing and Land.2 Here, she showed her strong support for her party’s stand on allowing those tenants living in council houses to be allowed to buy their residences. In 1966, she was selected into the shadow treasury lineup where she was strongly in opposition to the policy of the Labor party which set compulsory price and income management, she stated that such policies would not help the economy and that they would, in fact, damage the economy. At a party conference in 1966, Thatcher criticized the high taxation policies of the Labor government, stating that they were going against the established order of British society and turning towards socialism, and perhaps they would later turn towards communism. Her main argument for this position was that low taxes encouraged people to work harder to earn an income. She was among the small number of Conservative MPs to hold up the bill whose purpose was to decriminalize homosexuality in men. Moreover, she was also among those who voted in agreement of a bill to decriminalize abortion. She further gave her support for the maintaining of the death penalty but voted against the easing of the laws concerning divorce. These stances serve to show that while she was progressive in some of her views, she was extremely conservative in others. Edward Heath led the Conservative party to triumph in the 1970 general elections, and this proved to be an opportunity for her, as she was appointed Secretary for Education and Science. In her new position, she came to draw much public attention through her promotion of cutting spending in the education system. One of the most controversial moves during her first few months was the abolition of milk for schoolchildren at no cost3; therefore, because ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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