The son of a barrister and lecturer, Tony Blair was born in Edinburgh, but spent most of his childhood in Durham. At the age of 14 he returned to Edinburgh to finish his education at Fettes College. He studied law at Oxford, and went on to become a barrister himself.
After standing unsuccessfully for the Labour Party in a by-election, Blair went on to win the seat of Sedgefield in the 1983 General Election, aged 30.
Tony Blair made a speedy rise through the ranks, being promoted first to the shadow Treasury front bench in 1984. He subsequently served as a trade and industry spokesman, before being elected to the Shadow Cabinet in 1988 where he was made Shadow Secretary of State for Energy. In 1989 he moved to the employment brief.
After the 1992 election Labour's new leader, John Smith, promoted Blair to Shadow Home Secretary. It was in this post that Blair made famous his pledge that Labour would be tough on crime, tough on the causes of crime.
John Smith died suddenly and unexpectedly in 1994, and in the subsequent leadership contest Tony Blair won a large majority of his party's support.
Blair immediately launched his campaign for the modernisation of the Labour Party, determined to complete the shift further towards the political centre which he saw as essential for victory. The debate over Clause 4 of the party's constitution was considered the crucial test of whether its members would commit to Blair's project. He removed the commitment to public ownership, and at this time coined the term New Labour.
The Labour Party won the 1997 General Election by a landslide, after 18 years in Opposition. At the age of 43 , Tony Blair became the youngest Prime Minister since Lord Liverpool in 1812.
The government began to implement a far-reaching programme of constitutional change, putting the question of devolution to referendums in Scotland and Wales.
An elected post of Mayor of London was established at the head of a new capital-wide authority, and all but 92 hereditary peers were removed from the House of Lords in the first stage of its reform. The government has also implemented an investment programme of £42 billion in its priority areas of health and education.
Tony Blair was re-elected with another landslide majority in the 2001 General Election.
He is married to the barrister Cherie Booth QC, and they have four children. Their youngest, Leo, was the first child born to a serving Prime Minister in over 150 years.
I am posting this thread because I am very interested in collecting opinions from other members of England, Great Britain, America, the Commonwealth, and other worldwide areas on the current British PM.
My personal opinion of the man has varied. I have always been supporting Liberal Democrats party, but as a government that has undergone some tough crises (The Foot and Mouth Epidemic, NHS Issues as well as the current global military and economic unrest) and come out on top. While Japan, Germany and France's economy shows some serious concerns, although the Pounds value has steadily slipped the British economy continues straight and is current experiencing the "Baghdad Bounce", as it has been labeled.
To me, currently, the Conservatives (Tory's) do not merit much attention. I respect their Local policy action, which I have seen the active result of – A road was stopped being closed in my area and they are the only party that has bothered to leaflet me for the upcoming local elections, but as a whole I still believe the party lacks a strong policy, choosing more to defy the New Labor government without serious justification. I also cannot condone the 20% cuts "across the board" the Tory's plan.
Moving onto political times, I believe he worked hard to attempt to secure international support for the war on Iraq and has raised the public profile of the coalition. I believe him to be, for lack of a better phrase, a "good man" with a strong social conscience and a shrewd political sense.
I'd like to open the floor and hear other people's opinions. Is he, as I have heard some Americans describe;
Finally a "Man in Europe who has his ass in gear" (Yes I have heard that one) or "Bush's lapdog?" (That one too.)
Edited by Certifiably Cait, 26 August 2012 - 03:22 PM.