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School of Politics and International Relations

Both the Conservatives and Labour are in thrall to member power

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Professor Tim Bale published an opinion piece for the Financial Times on member power within political parties. He writes: “Political parties, whether they call themselves leftwing or rightwing, mainstream or insurgent, are, like businesses, so much more than a bunch of organograms showing who’s in charge of who. They are living, breathing cultures — an ever-shifting balance of forces between the management, the workforce, the salesforce and the customer. Who runs the show is clearly important — but it’s by no means all that matters.”