School of Politics and International Relations

A dire warning for our old political system

12 September 2019

Professor Tim Bale wrote an opinion piece for Unherd on the outlook for the UK’s two main political parties. He writes: “It’s worth reminding ourselves, especially when we’re talking about parties that have been around a while, that they do tend to limp and linger on. They fade slowly into obscurity and obsolescence, rather than dying a dramatic death. That’s partly because the barriers to entry for anybody aspiring to replace them are pretty damned high, particularly in plurality systems such as the UK’s. Britain’s big two have been so dominant for so long that they are more or less dug in in a slew of safe seats. What established parties do find difficult to escape, however, is being rendered increasingly irrelevant by social, economic and cultural change.”
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