Where There is Discord, Can They Bring Harmony? Managing Intra-Party Dissent on European Integration in the Conservative Party

  title={Where There is Discord, Can They Bring Harmony? Managing Intra-Party Dissent on European Integration in the Conservative Party},
  author={Philip Lynch and Richard Whitaker},
  journal={The British Journal of Politics and International Relations},
  pages={317 - 339}
  • P. Lynch, R. Whitaker
  • Published 1 August 2013
  • Economics
  • The British Journal of Politics and International Relations
Research Highlights and Abstract The Conservative Party became more united around a soft Eurosceptic position in opposition, but internal divisions are evident on the scale and pace of change to the UK's relationship with the EU. Conservative Party leaders have employed a range of methods to manage intra-party dissent on European integration: intervention in candidate selection, patronage, discipline, policy compromises, permitting low-cost dissent, referendum pledges and reducing issue… Expand

Figures and Tables from this paper

Rivalry on the right: The Conservatives, the UK Independence Party (UKIP) and the EU issue
Multi-party politics alters the dynamics of party competition in Westminster elections. In a case study of the Conservative Party and the UK Independence Party (UKIP), theories of niche versusExpand
Explaining the Perseverance of "Independence in Europe": Strategic Reinforcements of Minority Nationalist Pro-Europeanism
In the 1980’s minority nationalist parties adopted a policy of “independence in Europe.” Paradoxically, the policy simultaneously advocated conceding powers to a supranational body and taking backExpand
Conservative modernisation and European integration: From silence to salience and schism
The re-emergence of European integration as a difficult issue for the Conservative Party exposed the limits of Cameron’s modernisation project. In opposition, Cameron had defused the EU issue byExpand
Party debate over Europe in national election campaigns: Electoral disunity and party cohesion
Few political parties are willing to lead the public debate on how the European Union should develop and parties rarely publicly discuss issues on the EU agenda. This is probably one of the mostExpand
Intra-party dissent over Brexit in the British Conservative Party
This article seeks to map the evolution of intra-party dissent over Brexit in the parliamentary Conservative Party between July 2016 and January 2020. It shows that dissent was primarily due to theExpand
All Brexiteers now? Brexit, the Conservatives and party change
The 2016 referendum vote to leave the European Union (EU) brought about significant change in the policy and strategy of the Conservative Party. Despite David Cameron’s resignation, these dramaticExpand
The People Against Europe: The Eurosceptic Challenge to the United Kingdom's Coalition Government
This article approaches Euroscepticism as central to a contemporary dynamic of government and opposition. Populist Eurosceptic mobilizations exemplify opposition to depoliticized forms of politicalExpand
Reassessing British Conservative Euroscepticism as a Case of Party (Mis)Management
Much has already been written about internal party divisions and European integration (Hix and Lord 1997; Conti 2007; Szczerbiak and Taggart 2008; Conti 2014), with the example of the BritishExpand
The Labour Party and Europe from Brown to Miliband: Back to the Future?
This article analyzes British Labour Party leaders' discourses on Europe since 2007 – that is, after Tony Blair left power. Gordon Brown and Ed Miliband are analyzed in relation to one of theExpand
Who leads and who follows? The symbiotic relationship between UKIP and the Conservatives – and populism and Euroscepticism
The UK Independence Party (UKIP) is not so much a populist party that became Eurosceptic as a Eurosceptic party that became populist. However, careful tracing of a sequence that began in the lateExpand


Cross-Cutting Issues and Party Strategy in the European Union
Has European integration affected national electoral politics beyond the margins? Experts describe its main impact as empowerment of radical voices. Mainstream parties avoid European Union (EU)Expand
Euroscepticism and Conservative Electoral Support: How an Asset Became a Liability
This article uses the British Election Panel Study to assess the impact of voters' and party positions vis-a-vis European integration on Conservative electoral support between 1992 and 1996. OverExpand
Let's Discuss this Later
The issue of European integration has disrupted party politics in Denmark, Norway and Sweden in various ways. This article assesses the impact of internal division over Europe within certain parties,Expand
Conservative Euroscepticism and the Referendum Party in the 1997 British General Election
Few issues have divided the British Conservative Party more seriously than prospect of greater European integration in the 1990s. In the 1997 election, Conservative candidates were divided almostExpand
A Loveless Marriage: The Conservatives and the European People's Party
The Conservatives are allied members of the European People’s Party–European Democrats (EPP–ED) group in the European Parliament. But the link with the pro-European EPP has been a contentious issueExpand
Sovereign Nations and Global Markets: Modern British Conservatism and Hyperglobalism
In this article we seek to trace through the major stands of British Euroscepticism and concentrate, in particular, on the importance of a powerful ‘hyperglobalist’ Eurosceptical strand withinExpand
Wets and Dries Resurgent? Intra-Party Alignments Among Contemporary Conservative Party Members
This article maps new survey data to show that there are three main ideological tendencies among Conservative Party members today and that they differ significantly on a range of contemporaryExpand
To Call or Not to Call? Political Parties and Referendums on the EU’s Constitutional Treaty
Why did some political parties in the EU member states support and others oppose a facultative referendum on the Constitutional Treaty? The authors argue that electoral competition played a majorExpand
Where has all the trouble gone? British intra-party parliamentary divisions during the Lisbon ratification
The divisions over European integration used to be part of the landscape of British politics. Yet during the Lisbon ratification of 2007 and 2008 the main parliamentary characteristic was unity. AllExpand
The Attitudinal Assimilation of Europe by the Conservative Parliamentary Party
This paper demonstrates the apparent assimilation of the European issue by the Conservative parliamentary party between 1997 and 2005. It does this through a cluster analysis of BritishExpand