Gladstone loses the election of 1874: Gladstone and his cabinet are accused of being like a ‘range of exhausted volcanoes’. Disraeli takes power with a majority government.
Why did Disraeli win?
· Too much legislation in his first ministry, proved overwhelming. Alienated too many groups in the country. There was disquiet and discontent from the Whiggish element of the Liberal Party: feared Gladstone was becoming too radical. For example: disestablishment of the Church of Ireland and the Irish Land Act (appeared to challenge property rights - these acts were regarded by the Tories as conflicting with their core principles and posed a significant threat to the landed-gentry).
· ‘Tory Democracy’. This slogan has been associated with Disraeli’s speeches in 1872 in Manchester and at the Crystal Palace. Trying to create an all encompassing concept which the country could unite around.
Basically, Disraeli was trying to unite the country around certain key themes.
1) Wanted to preserve institutions such as the monarchy, the Church and the constitution. The 3 Cs.
2) Uphold the British Empire and its interests.
3) Believed there should be some degree of social legislation, to improve society for the less fortunate.