Today In History
In 1979, Margaret Thatcher — then Leader of the Opposition — puts the motion “That this House has no confidence in Her Majesty’s Government,” at the time led by Prime Minister James Callaghan, a historic dingbat, who led (“led”) Britain through the devastating Winter of Discontent.
The motion carries by one vote, forcing Callaghan to call an election and resulting in 18 years of Conservative government in the UK.
This is all very complicated, but in short, Callaghan had considered calling an election in 1978, but decided to wait a year so the economy would improve. The economy did not improve — it, in fact, fell apart — and then a referendum on devolution in Scotland failed, which angered the Scottish nationalists, which had supported the Labour government and angered the Liberals, which supported devolution and were miffed by the high vote threshold set for passage.
Anyway, everyone was put out with Callaghan and there was a very exciting vote and debate on March 28, 1979.