Blair, Tony (1953–)

Tony Blair became British prime minister in 1997 having been elected Labour leader in 1994. He entered parliament at the 1983 general election, a party defeat that influenced his support for new leader Neil Kinnock and his communications director Peter Mandelson. They reciprocated by rapidly promoting the member of Parliament as a representative of their “new model” party. Blair also formed a close working relationship with fellow parliamentarian Gordon Brown and formed a relationship with Labour's chief strategist Philip Gould and leading media supporter Alastair Campbell. These five (and, indirectly, Kinnock) have been credited with rebranding the party “New Labour” during Blair's early leadership, which was a logical consequence of their affinity with Bill Clinton and his “New Democrat policy” repositioning (or triangulation), and strategic ...

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