Former British PM James Callaghan Dies at 92

James Callaghan, who was Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1976 to 1979, has died at the age of 92.

Former British PM dies aged 92 (The Australian)

Tony Blair has led tributes to former British prime minister James Callaghan, who died at the weekend, only 11 days after his wife Audrey passed away. Lord Callaghan was the longest-living former prime minister and the only politician to have held all four major offices of state in Britain: prime minister, chancellor of the exchequer, foreign secretary and home secretary. He died peacefully at his home in East Sussex at the age of 92.

Lord Callaghan was Labour prime minister from 1976 to 1979. British Prime Minister Mr Blair said he was one of the giants of the Labour movement. “He was one of the generation who fought in the war and came back determined to build a better, fairer and different Britain in peace,” he said. Lord Callaghan is most associated in the public mind with the International Monetary Fund crisis of 1976 and the industrial strife of the winter of discontent in 1978-79. His failure to control the wave of strikes has been blamed by some people and credited by others for ending the era of consensus politics and precipitating the election of Margaret Thatcher.

Politicians from across the political spectrum joined last night in remembering Lord Callaghan’s decency and kindness. The Queen sent condolences to his family, while the Prince of Wales described him as a remarkable man.

Callaghan, whose tenure overlapped that of Jimmy Carter’s presidency in the U.S., shared Carter’s misfortune of being in office during a horrible economic period.

James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. reliapundit says:

    carter and callaghan JUST HAPPENBED to be in office when things sucked!?!?!/

    oh yeah, and reagan and bush senior just happened to be in power when the USSR collapsed. and W just happens to be in power as democracy spreads across the middle east.


    the Carter Malaise – and the Callaghan malaise – were the result of their LEftist policies, not happenstance.

  2. In poker, that’s called running into a streak of bad playing.

    To be fair, things weren’t in good shape in either country when they took office, but they found a way to make them worse.