Jun 4, 2009

Britain's Drama


In the United Kingdom, Prime Minister Gordon Brown is having a tough time
. After Iraq, the recession (which he is largely blamed for, being Chancellor of the Exchequer--a rough equivalent of Treasury Secretary--for Tony Blair's turn in office), and, now, the MP Expense Scandal.

Yesterday, the Communities Secretary (a member of his Cabinet) resigned, one day after the Home Secretary resigned. Last week, the Justice Minister resigned, too. These are big events; imagine if the Secretaries of State, HUD, and the Attorney General all left in a matter of days because of scandal. One would think that the President had no ability to govern any longer. In our system, we'd just have to wait it out until the next election. However, in the UK's parliamentary system, the Prime Minister is more like the Majority Leader of the House, meaning that at any time, if enough people in his party vote for it, he could be unceremoniously dumped.

Apparently, a letter is circulating amongst the backbenchers seeking to do just that to Gordon Brown. In the next few days, we may see him resign. He may survive, only to limp into the next elections battered and incapable of winning (imagine George Bush at the end of his last term). Either way, the effective governance of Gordon Brown is over.

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