AHC: Have Labour and the Liberals be the two major parties of Britain Politics?

So with a POD no earlier than 1910, how could you have the Liberals and Labour be the main two parties of British Politics?

Given the fluid nature of the Conservative party over the years and the policy’s of the Liberals this maybe be hard but I don’t think it would be impossible. I guess you probably need to have a more Socially Conservative Labour Party which...isn’t completely hard and maybe the National Party or similar being a bigger presence.

Additionally you could have the Tories splitting over the 1910 Constitutional Crisis with the Liberals joining up with the Radical Tory splinter etc.
 
Britain loses the Great War and goes fascist. The dictator uses the Conservative Party as his political vehicles. The Liberals and Labour are either banned outright or become puppet opposition parties.

The dictatorship falls after Britain loses the next big war, but in the restored democracy, the Conservatives are discredited, so the Liberals become the main right wing party.
 
The Liberal Party tacks to the right before it fades into obscurity and displaces the Tories in time for the rise of the Labour Party.
 
Britain loses the Great War and goes fascist. The dictator uses the Conservative Party as his political vehicles. The Liberals and Labour are either banned outright or become puppet opposition parties.
I always find the idea of Britain turning to Fascism because they lost the Great War a bit odd, it’s more likely that something like the Social Credit movement becomes the standard bearer of a British Anti-Communist Democracy thing.

The Liberal Party tacks to the right before it fades into obscurity and displaces the Tories in time for the rise of the Labour Party.
Certainly possible if DLG manages to takeover the Liberals fully and split the Tories, and he becomes this Paternalistic Conservative style figure versus a Social Democratic labour etc.
 
Realistically, the Conservative Party doesn't actually stand for anything.

Both the Liberals and Labour have definite policy platforms, and philosophies

The Conservatives try to adopt things, whilst hanging onto money and power. The Liberals of Asquith built up the Grand Fleet for example. The Conservatives cannot out-military the party that did that, created the Entente, and so on

The simply take what they can and brand it as theirs. Because to them all that matters is power, position, and influence.
 
Realistically, the Conservative Party doesn't actually stand for anything.

Both the Liberals and Labour have definite policy platforms, and philosophies

The Conservatives try to adopt things, whilst hanging onto money and power. The Liberals of Asquith built up the Grand Fleet for example. The Conservatives cannot out-military the party that did that, created the Entente, and so on

The simply take what they can and brand it as theirs. Because to them all that matters is power, position, and influence.

The Liberal Party has, at varying points in its history, been passionately against Proportional Representation, passionately in favour of Proportional Representation, passionately anti-socialist, in government with socialists, passionately anti-devolution, passionately pro-devolution, pro-grammar schools, anti-grammar schools, passionately pro-European, and also flirted with euroscepticism.
 
An interesting POD might be Home Rule happening earlier under Gladstone meaning the Liberals remain a classical liberal party that comes to be seen as the main counterweight to Labour.
 
Realistically, the Conservative Party doesn't actually stand for anything.

Both the Liberals and Labour have definite policy platforms, and philosophies

The Conservatives try to adopt things, whilst hanging onto money and power. The Liberals of Asquith built up the Grand Fleet for example. The Conservatives cannot out-military the party that did that, created the Entente, and so on

The simply take what they can and brand it as theirs. Because to them all that matters is power, position, and influence.
Well, from what I gathered, the Tories' pragmatism and flexability has usually been their strong suit since conservatism as a politicla position has always been about order, the staus quo and its maintanance. Hence why typically it's hard for them to be reformatory unless it's really vital and or kinda forced into it.

Though maybe it could be the Overton window shifts to the left more than the Tories could keep up and they end up splitting apart, with the moderates and so on going voer to the Liberals and thus render the Tories into a pretty small and battered party.
 
My point was, or included, that philosophically the Conservatives could be squeezed out and become the minor party. Note that before the Thatcher leadership, all this free marketism and it's monetary policy focus was not mainstream, and in fact the Conservatives generally went along with the post-WW2 consensus that there was a social settlement in place. Only under Thatcher was that overturned, and a new harsh ideology spawned.

The WW1 era Liberal Party whilst bringing in social reforms also maintained a strong focus on Empire and the military. There's little immediate leeway to suggest a position on these things that would make the Conservatives stand out.

If the war had been won faster, for example, Asquith's Liberals would have remained in power and been the party that won the war. Even up to the end of 1916 they could have claimed this, whilst acknowledging Labour and Conservative input.

The Liberals would thus have been the dominant British face at the peace conference, whilst post-war a rise for the Labour Party can be posited based on the freeing of a generation from social constraints during the war, and a feeling that a more radical change was needed.

Again it is not obvious where the Conservatives would find anything other than a minority position here. What are they going to be standing for other than the resumption and continuance of privilege?

Whilst the Liberals would lose votes to the Labour Party, the Conservatives would likewise do to the party that won the war. An earlier win without direct American intervention would see direct annexations rather than mandates, or at least direct protectorates, like what Britain had in Egypt and the Italians in the Somali sultanates. The Conservatives can hardly argue against an expansion of Empire, or against continued military expenditure.

In OTL the 1920s and early 1930s were a time where the Liberals slowly eclipsed, so they could easily be a time when the Conservatives slowly eclipsed instead.
 
Again it is not obvious where the Conservatives would find anything other than a minority position here. What are they going to be standing for other than the resumption and continuance of privilege?
Additionally, the Tories don’t have a natural base in comparison to the Liberals, with the Celtic fringes. If the Liberals could keep a loose coalition of the Rural and Educated Middle Classes/Wealthy on there side with ‘King, Country and Empire’ alongside the ‘Radical’ aspects then they could win. Hell, you could easily see the Liberals become the party of Cooperatives and Farmers whilst Labour is one of Social Democracy and Trade Unionism etc.
In OTL the 1920s and early 1930s were a time where the Liberals slowly eclipsed, so they could easily be a time when the Conservatives slowly eclipsed instead.
You could combine it with a Radical Tory split, with the ‘Progressive Conservative’ lot ala, The Chamberlain’s rejoining the Liberals if the Tory’s start to crumble.
I believe Rattigan’s superb Anglo Saxon Social Model TL did exactly this although its POD was C19th.
I have read a bit of it, I think if the Tories and Liberals run on ‘Radical’ grounds then what’s more likely to happen is a merger of the two under a ‘Unionist’ banner as the Free Traders/Dries leave to there own party, with a Labour/Socialist party emerging in time, similar to ‘Fight and Be Right’.
 
So with a POD no earlier than 1910, how could you have the Liberals and Labour be the main two parties of British Politics?

Given the fluid nature of the Conservative party over the years and the policy’s of the Liberals this maybe be hard but I don’t think it would be impossible. I guess you probably need to have a more Socially Conservative Labour Party which...isn’t completely hard and maybe the National Party or similar being a bigger presence.

Additionally you could have the Tories splitting over the 1910 Constitutional Crisis with the Liberals joining up with the Radical Tory splinter etc.
I think at least having some sort of socially Conservative faction within the Labour Party is plausible. I don't think Left-leaning economic policy and cultural Conservatism are incompatible, and in the absence of a Conservative party, I think both the Liberals and Labour would have some sort of Progressive/Conservative cultural divide within their party. Then again, I'm just a clueless yank.
 
I think at least having some sort of socially Conservative faction within the Labour Party is plausible. I don't think Left-leaning economic policy and cultural Conservatism are incompatible, and in the absence of a Conservative party, I think both the Liberals and Labour would have some sort of Progressive/Conservative cultural divide within their party. Then again, I'm just a clueless yank.
Labour has always had a Social Conservative faction within the party, with Ernest Bevin and Herbert Morrison being good example of that style of politics (amusingly, both hated each other). You could have an Economically Dry, but Social Liberal Liberals whilst Labour is more Economically Wet but Socially Conservative.

Labour embraces Monetary Reform etc.
 
I don't think Left-leaning economic policy and cultural Conservatism are incompatible, and in the absence of a Conservative party, I think both the Liberals and Labour would have some sort of Progressive/Conservative cultural divide within their party. Then again, I'm just a clueless yank.
Not clueless at all. That combination of right wing social policy and left wing (ish) economic policy seems to be something for the Tory Party of today to at least flirt with so I can imagine a scenario like this in the ATL past too.
 
Not clueless at all. That combination of right wing social policy and left wing (ish) economic policy seems to be something for the Tory Party of today to at least flirt with so I can imagine a scenario like this in the ATL past too.

This was OTL Labour, until Roy Jenkins as Home Secretary.
 
What if Churchill wins a seat for the Liberals in 1923 and doesn't depart the party in 1924 by standing as Constitutionalist?

The Liberals under Asquith are still massacred in the 1924 election but retain a few more seats. Churchill rather than Lloyd George is elected leader in the Commons and the 1929 election is a three way draw with Labour as the largest party. Labour try to govern but are ousted in the wake of the depression in 1931 by a Conservative-Liberal National government under Baldwin. Labour do better in opposition in the 30's as the only alternative

Churchill splits the National government in 1938 over the issue of appeasement, a election is called and the Conservatives are the largest party with Liberals and Labour virtually tied. The Conservatives continue in power until the debacle of France and a new National government led by Churchill and Labour with support from some Conservatives is formed. The Conservative party is universally seen as the the party of the "Guilty Men".

Post war the 1945 election is a contest between Labour and Churchill's Liberals which Labour narrowly win. The Conservatives are routed and the pattern is set for the Liberal vs Labour duopoly post-war.
 
This was OTL Labour, until Roy Jenkins as Home Secretary.
Well, not really. Labour has always had a Social Liberal streak within the party (Attlee campaigned for Decriminalisation of Homosexuality and Bevan also believed in similar) but is fair to say that it did also have a strong Social Conservative contingent too.
Post war the 1945 election is a contest between Labour and Churchill's Liberals which Labour narrowly win. The Conservatives are routed and the pattern is set for the Liberal vs Labour duopoly post-war.
Interesting, I think Churchill would probably suit a Economically Dry, Imperial Positive Liberals to be sure though he would probably be annoyed by the more Social Liberal elements etc .
 
An old post of mine:

Lloyd George tried in 1919 to get the Coalition Liberals to merge with the Conservatives to form a "Centre Party." The decisive opposition to this plan came not from the Conservatives (who knew they would dominate the "new" party, whatever its name) but from the Coalition Liberals, who made it clear that they still regarded themselves as Liberals. Even if LG could have gotten more of the Coalition Liberals to go along, and such a party was formed, it would still be basically a Conservative party (especially since some Coalition Liberals were certain to refuse to join it) and would still eventually oust LG. Indeed, even if the "new" party included the word Liberal in its name, it would be no more "liberal" than the Australian Liberals today.
 
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