Lloyd George and the coalition 1918-1922
Why did LG win the 1918 election?
- Liberal split: dispute between the traditionalists (asquithian libs) who believed in laissez faire etc, and the new liberals (LG) who were more willing to get involved (welfare reforms).
- LG was seen as the "man without a party" so without the Tories support he could not have remained as PM.
- He was seen as the best man to "win the peace". He also seen as a bold, decisive leader, a man of action.
- LG's electoral Rhetoric (language due to persuade; manifesto- what the party planned to do):
- He dominated the hustings and the media and it became "more of a plebiscite than an election" (a vote on one issue, and that was whether to keep LG or not).
- He was impressive and a persuasive orator (good speaker)
- He made promises in tune with the mood of the nation such as "make Germany pay" and "homes fit for heroes", (this appealed due to the war)
- CONSERVATIVES wanted the coalition with LG because:
- he was the "man who won the war"
- he was an electoral asset
- he appealed to the working classes
- he was a barrier against the spread of communism
- he had good relationships with Bonar Law (a conservative)
- The Conservatives had also lost confidence in themselves:
- hadn't won an election since 1902
- the extension to the franchise/The representation of the people act (the right to vote) worried them. Women 30+ and all men 21+ could now vote and were less likey to vote conservative as the lower classes liked LG's welfare reforms; (so they wanted LG for the support of the new voters)
- THE COUPON ELECTION:
- All coalition candidates were issued with a certificate signed by Bonar Law and LG; "the coupon"
- With this, it meant that they were unopposed in their constituency by any other coalition candidates which maximised their chance of success (88% of coalition candidates were elected)
- This particulary disadvantaged Labour:
- Constituency A: