Are we witnessing the Glass Cliff phenomenon in UK politics?

(24 Posts)
MardyBra Sun 10-Jul-16 18:53:33

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glass_cliff

I've just been pondering that it's so unusual to have no strong male candidates for political leadership, and that women candidates are being put forward like sacrificial lambs to sort out the post-Brexit mess.

Whatever you think about her politics, I'd like to think that Theresa May is in there on her own merit. But Andrea Leadsom? Really?

applecharlotte Sun 10-Jul-16 19:02:31

Yes, I think so. It's horribly familiar to how failing private sector companies recruit women CEO's. In four years Boris will probably sweep in and 'save the day'.

Andrea's comment about motherhood this week is pretty depressing also. I can't imagine a man suggesting he is a better candidate for the leadership due to having children.

tribpot Sun 10-Jul-16 19:11:22

The trouble is, it's Catch 22 isn't it? A number of more likely (male) candidates have stepped aside because no-one wants to be the Brexit PM, and so if you're a woman who's been waiting for an opportunity, any opportunity is better than none. That said, I think May would have been a contender regardless, but will she (or less likely Leadsom) now have to be a Glass Cliff PM as well as a Brexit PM, not to mention an 'Anyone but Gove' PM, based on Ken Clarke's remarks earlier in the week. God it's depressing.

And from the Beeb today - "Are women taking over British politics?". I get that it's a deliberately provocative headline-grabber, although the Beeb should really not sink to this kind of crap. But really. Why is no-one complaining Andy Murray is hogging all the limelight at Wimbledon? Surely winning twice is just greedy.

RufusTheReindeer Sun 10-Jul-16 19:45:42

Yes i think we are,

MardyBra Sun 10-Jul-16 19:49:14

"In four years Boris will probably sweep in and 'save the day'."

I sincerely hope that memories will be longer than that.

I suppose it's natural that the BBC would report on it tribpot, as it is an unusual phenomenon. But the headline is unacceptable.

tribpot Sun 10-Jul-16 20:05:43

Yes, I've certainly no objection to them drawing attention to the unusual situation of both final candidates being female, and indeed noting the number of other parties with female leaders currently, but given there are more male MPs in the current Parliament than there have ever been female MPs, I think rumours of a takeover might be slightly premature.

singingsixpence82 Sun 10-Jul-16 21:40:06

Yes, I think so. It's horribly familiar to how failing private sector companies recruit women CEO's. In four years Boris will probably sweep in and 'save the day'.

I hadn't heard of that being a thing. Are there any studies or articles on it?

Andrea's comment about motherhood this week is pretty depressing also. I can't imagine a man suggesting he is a better candidate for the leadership due to having children.

Didn't Iain Duncan Smith say something similar?

tribpot Sun 10-Jul-16 21:57:19

The Wikipedia article references this from the British Journal of Management and this from the William & Mary Journal of Women & the Law, it appears to be the subject of some research.

BertrandRussell Sun 10-Jul-16 21:59:19

Yes. Next question?
grin

singingsixpence82 Sun 10-Jul-16 22:04:43

Thankstribpot - how interesting but how grim shock. Off to have a read.

JedRambosteen Sun 10-Jul-16 22:14:05

Very interesting to see a thread on this, as I am aware of the glass cliff/female CEO phenomenon and had the same thought earlier this week. Interestingly, I saw a female academic present research on this topic ~18 months ago. She noted that, with the right support in place, these kinds of crises can provide an excellent opportunity to both prevail & shine, particularly with a more subtle leadership style. Question is whether the Tories are going to get behind Theresa May (I'm assuming she gets it) or whether everyone's going to take a step back & use her as cannon fodder. Hard to tell right now.

Miffer Mon 11-Jul-16 06:57:02

Angela Eagle was baffling in her interview. Careful not to distance herself from any of Corbyn's policies (presumably this is the line chosen by her and the rest of the 'rebels') and focusing instead on him a an unelectable person. Yet she has the charisma of a mop.

With Owen Smith in the wings one can't help but wonder if she is a sacrificial lamb. The one chosen to go out in front and test the water. If the NEC rules Corbyn is on the ballot she will be left there on her own, if not (or if it looks like Corbyn may lose regardless) Owen will announce.

Not sure how viable this theory is but I have a feeling that it was vital for somebody to announce prior to the NEC meeting (or to trigger a NEC meeting, not sure how it works).

BeMorePanda Mon 11-Jul-16 07:16:12

Yes I've been thinking this for a while. Thanks for naming it Mardy

BertrandRussell Mon 11-Jul-16 08:22:41

There will be men leading both parties in 12 months. You mark my words.
Assuming there is still a Labour Party, that is

Destinysdaughter Mon 11-Jul-16 08:33:11

I don't understand why neither Yvette Cooper nor Liz Kendall haven't jumped at the chance of being leader this time. Am I missing something?

JedRambosteen Mon 11-Jul-16 08:46:23

There will be men leading both parties in 12 months. You mark my words.

Depressingly I have to agree.

BertrandRussell Mon 11-Jul-16 08:49:31

"I don't understand why neither Yvette Cooper nor Liz Kendall haven't jumped at the chance of being leader this time. Am I missing something?"

Because they don't want their names forever associated with the destruction of the Labour Party.

tribpot Mon 11-Jul-16 11:15:42

I guess Eagle can't distance herself too far from Corbyn's policies because of his massive support among the membership. Yes she might get some MPs to vote for her but that's not going to be much cop if 200,000 other votes are cast for Corbyn.

When the party is in disarray, it's always time for Harriet Harman.

applecharlotte Tue 12-Jul-16 17:47:27

My course tutor just published this: news.nationalpost.com/news/world/are-women-party-leaders-set-up-to-fail-theresa-may-faces-the-glass-cliff-in-the-u-k

JedRambosteen Wed 13-Jul-16 06:50:44

Great link, Apple. It was Michelle Ryan that I saw presenting her research.

Felascloak Wed 13-Jul-16 08:23:58

I doubt TM will be gone in a year. Maybe after the next GE if the Tories cock up. Thing is no one wants the brexit poison chalice, certainly no one else with Mays credentials. I think she's going to do well.
Angela Eagle though confused Wet mop is a good summary.

deydododatdodontdeydo Wed 13-Jul-16 08:41:23

I agree Felas. I don't share the apocalyptic views of some, and think TM will be here for a while and do a fair job.
I don't think AE is anywhere near good enough to succeed though.

Miffer Tue 19-Jul-16 23:25:15

Well I have to say I am feeling a little bit prophetic. I think the £25 and 6 month cut off helped.

LassWiTheDelicateAir Wed 20-Jul-16 00:42:52

Unfortunately I think Jezza will win again. I would have preferred Angela Eagle, not because she is a woman but she has far more experience than Owen Smith and is to the right of him.

I'm not reassured by Smith declaring he is just as radical as Corbyn.

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