Are British Prime Ministers as powerful as sometimes claimed?

1301 words 6 pages
It can be argued that Prime ministers are almost omnipotent in the political system in the UK, this is due to the shear variety of powers in-which the prime minister holds, and the prerogatives that are taken advantage by the prime minister. However, checks on powers in the UK means that the prime minister is not as power as they appear, moreover, they are not separable from the UK political system, henceforth, they are controlled and limited within the system they are part of, thus, more often than not, prime ministers are less powerful then sometimes claimed.

However, prime ministers are as powerful as they appear due to the multiple sources of power they control within the UK. Mainly, the prime minister has a vast amount of power as
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On-the-other-hand prime ministers, like all people are confined by the events that take place around them, this they are not that powerful as these events define the extent to which they can achieve their aims. For instance, Brown's power became very limited over the countries economics after the credit crunch of 2008, meaning that prime ministers are not as powerful as sometimes claimed because it is the events in-which impact their reign that control the extent of their power. Even when times were good during Blair's leadership, and the economic boom of the 2000's, Blair was only able to invest heavily in education and public services due to the fact times were economically good, not due to the fact he had power as a prime minister. Thus, a prime ministers power is dependable and elastic throughout their reign. Prime ministers do not have a set power, and cannot be as powerful as sometimes claimed unless all the factors within government are in their favour, thus prime ministers are not as powerful as sometimes claimed.

However, in the aspects in which a prime ministers have power over, such as cabinet, they do dominate and are as powerful as they appear. Both Thatcher and Blair dominated their cabinets during their time as prime ministers. Blair called cabinet meetings when he saw fit and developed the idea of "kitchen


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