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  • Edexcel Component 2.2: Established political parties

    AQA Component Political parties 

Click to read the article below and then answer the questions:

Labour’s fight to capitalise on Boris Johnson’s scandals

Background: what you need to know

The article explains that, although Labour is currently ahead of the Conservatives in the opinion polls, party leader Keir Starmer is still struggling to achieve recognition from voters. It looks at how Starmer has tried to move Labour away from the hard left positions adopted under the leadership of Jeremy Corbyn (2015-20).

Rather like Tony Blair (leader 1994-2007), he emphasises the party’s pro-business, pro-law and order, patriotic credentials. His aim is to win back working-class voters in ‘red wall’ seats who moved to the Conservatives in the 2019 election. Starmer has also opened up lines of attack on Boris Johnson, not just over the ‘party gate’ scandals but on the rising cost of living and unpopular tax increases.

According to the article, what are the challenges facing Labour as it attempts to return to power?

Find examples in the article of Labour policies which (a) indicate a movement away from ‘Corbynism’ and (b) are designed to appeal to its core voters.

Depending on the examination board you are following, now answer one of the following questions.

Question in the style of AQA Politics Paper 1

  • ‘The ideas and policies of the Labour party have changed considerably over the past decade.’ Analyse and evaluate this statement.

    In your answer you should draw on material from across the whole range of your course of study in Politics. [25 marks]

Question in the style of Edexcel Politics Paper 2

  • Evaluate the view that the policies of the Labour party have changed significantly in recent years.

    You must consider this view and the alternative to this view in a balanced way. [30 marks]

    TIP: Edexcel specifies four policy areas that you should know about for each of the UK’S major political parties: the economy, welfare, law and order, and foreign policy. Use the article to begin your research into how far Labour’s policies have changed in these areas. AQA does not specify particular policies but clearly these are also relevant areas to study.

Graham Goodlad, St John’s College

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