How far do the sources suggest that James Callaghan was a good prime minister?
As sources 1 and 2 would suggest James Callaghan was indeed a good prime minister. James Callaghan is a great prime minister who had the qualities that made him capable of running Britain but daunting economic circumstances led to his downfall. By the end of his government, Britain was deemed “The sick man of Europe”. Source 3 shows a clear disagreement though, as it states Callaghan “struggled to rule effectively until a vote of no-confidence” was called upon. Throughout his government, Callaghan biggest concern was to maintain economic stability but in doing so had destroyed Britain’s industry. As a result of this Callaghan will forever be associated with the Winter of Discontent incident which is exactly what source 3 is suggesting.
James, Callaghan is a man of experience is partially why he suited the role of Prime Minister. Source 2 states “The political skills he had perfected in his previous posts were just what was needed” which supports the view that indeed, James Callaghan was a man of experience. Callaghan is famous for being the only politician to ever serve in all four great offices of state: the Home Office, Foreign Office, Chancellorship and Premiership which reflected his ability to lead a government which had only a “minority” as source 1 states.
Callaghan is mentioned in source 2 to be a man who had the political skills to govern a minority government. Callaghan was consistent with his policies and had kept to Labour’s ideologies whilst maintaining a good relationship between the two major parties; Conservatives and Labour. As source 1 states, Callaghan is “well-suited to the compromise and permanent negotiation which is the condition of a minority government”. However, source 2 is limited due to the fact that the description of Callaghan came from Denis Healey, who served under the same party as Callaghan which leaves the source rather exposed to being...