Margaret Thatcher became the first woman in European history to be elected prime minister in 1979. She belongs to the conservative party and won theelection as the leader of this party. At that time, political and economic situation in England but also in the world were important to understand the election of Mrs. Thatcher as Prime Minister. How Mrs.Thatcher became Prime Minister?
First, we are focusing on the political background before her election. Actually it was quite tempestuous. The Heath government experienced many difficulties between1970 and 1974. The government executed a series of reversals in its economic policies. The Conservatives were defeated in the February 1974 general election. Thatcher thought that the Heath Governmenthad lost control of monetary policy—and had lost direction. After her party lost the second election of 1974 in October, Thatcher, determined to change the direction of the Conservative party,challenged Heath for the Conservative party leadership. She became Conservative Party leader on 11 February 1975.
In spite of economic recovery in the late seventies and recovery in average disposableincome from 1977 onwards, the Labor Government was faced with unease about the direction of the country. Eventually there was the "Winter of Discontent" in winter of 1978-79 during which there werewidespread strikes by local authority trade unions demanding larger pay raises for their members in result of the Labor’s attempt to control inflation Whilst the strikes were largely over by February 1979,the government's inability to contain the strikes earlier helped lead to Margaret Thatcher's Conservative victory in the 1979 general election and legislation to restrict unions.
Then, what abouteconomic situation? Concerning worldwide situation, whereas the living standards were rising in England in the 70’s, the oil crisis in 1973-74 had huge consequences. Actually, price controls were...