Heppell, Timothy (2005) Ideology and ministerial allocation in the Major government 1992–1997. Politics, 25 (3). pp. 144-152. ISSN 0263-3957

This article evaluates the allocation of ministerial portfolios according to ideological disposition within the Major government of 1992–1997. By examining the ideological attitudes of Conservative parliamentarians towards three ideological variables – economic policy, European policy and social, sexual and moral policy – it will analyse the ideological balance of the government vis-à-vis the Parliamentary Conservative Party (PCP); the ideological disposition of those departing and entering government; and the ideological profile of the ministers appointed to the ‘key’ ministerial positions. The article will demonstrate the following: first, the Thatcherite ‘right’ were underrepresented at ministerial level, whilst the Tory ‘left’ secured a level of ministerial representation disproportionate to their numerical strength within the PCP; second, this was despite the fact that the process of ministerial appointments and departures gradually enhanced the representation of the Thatcherite ‘right’ of the PCP at the expense of the Tory ‘left’; and finally, the ‘perception’ amongst the Thatcherite ‘right’ was that they were being marginalised in terms of the key ministries of state.

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