Ramsay MacDonald

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James Ramsay MacDonald (October 12, 1866November 9, 1937) was a British Labour politician, who served two separate terms as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. He rose from humble origins to become the first ever British Labour Prime Minister in 1924.

His first government lasted less than one year. Labour returned to power in 1929 but was soon overwhelmed by the crisis of the Great Depression, which split the Labour government. In 1931, he formed a "National Government" in which a majority of MPs were from the Conservatives. As a result, he was expelled from the Labour Party, which accused him of 'betrayal'.

He remained Prime Minister of the National Government from 1931 to 1935; during this time his health rapidly deteriorated and he became increasingly ineffective as a leader. He stood down as Prime Minister in 1935 but stayed in the Cabinet as Lord President of the Council until retiring from politics in 1937 and dying later that year.

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Part of this article consists of modified text from Wikipedia, and the article is therefore licensed under GFDL.
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