Britain Section 5

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1999: IRA and Protestant para-military call a cease-fire 1995: John Major and John Bruton issue framework agreement 1997: Tony Blair meets with Gerry Adams 1998: The Good Friday Agreement  Elections for a Northern Ireland assembly (shared power)  North-South council o 2001: IRA begins disarming o 2002: Home rule government is suspended, British direct rule reimposed o 2005  January: IRA is linked to a $40 million bank robbery  February: Sinn Fein supporter is murdered by IRA in Belfast bar  May: David Trimble ousted in elections, Sinn Feinn and Democratic Unionist Party win Political Challenges and Changing Agendas o Constitutional reform  Balance of powers amount constitutionally critical institutions  Democratic deficit of the Westminister model  Executive¶s great strength y Bypassing the cabinet on crucial decisions y Bias in the electoral system  Accountability of the British government?  Removal of hereditary peers¶ right to speak and vote in HOL  New Labour¶s potential legacy of constitutional reform has been sidetracked o Identities in Flux  Low minority representation in Parliament  Deep-seated social attitudes  Hardening of government policy on asylum ,refuge and immigration  2003: Asylum Bill  2004: Record levels of hate crimes in Britain and Wales  Rise in union militancy o The Challenges of Europe and the World o British Politics, Terrorism, and Brtain¶s Relationship with the United States  Blair¶s support for Iraq boosted Britain¶s influence in Europe  2002: support becomes a liability  Blair refuses all advice to make support of the war conditional, convinced that there were WMD  2005: bomb in London  Blair loses support because of Iraq British Politics in Comparative Perspective o Escaped the recession in the 1990s o Outperforming most major world economies o o o o

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Low unemployment and inflation Steady growth NOT an economic paradise 1997: less attachments to voter¶s commitment to party and occupational interests 2001: instinctive party support has been replaced by pick and choose 2005: increase in election participation

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