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Is Tony Blair more like a President than a Prime Minister In order to assess whether Tony Blairs leadership is more presidential than prime ministerial one must first consider the significant differences between the presidential and Parliamentary regimes The Presidential system of government is characterised by a constitutional separation of powers between the legislative congress and the executive the Presidency In Britain however the executive and legislative overlap In theory the US President exercises all of the prerogatives of the executive and the British Prime Minister is obliged to share executive competencies The US President following advice from his staff and Cabinet makes legislative recommendations to Congress whereas the British Prime Minister following consultations within the executive and having reached some form of collective agreement issues legislative instructions to Parliament1 The US constitution secures the Presidents position in office for a term of four years and they cannot be dismissed by congress except through impeachment However looser party discipline means the President cannot regularly command Congressional support for his policies since their party may be in the minority in Congress The British Prime Minister in contrast has relatively more power provided the support of the majority party is sustained he or she leads both the executive and legislative arms of government2 The prolific use of the term presidential in relation to Tony Blairs leadership can be used in both senses of the word Firstly to express the magnitude of Blairs leadership and secondly as a means of expressing a qualitative shift away from the more traditional British political process The analogy comes in a variety of guises and contexts that are differently motivated have different sources and implications and are differently weighted in explanatory value First are those references which are essentially circumstantial in natureIncluded in this category would be the enhanced emphasis upon individual leadership personal communications and Presidential style in the conduct of British politics3 The employment of
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