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Re-Elected PM Blair Works On Forming New British Government

  • VOA News

British Prime Minister Tony Blair, fresh from winning Thursday's general election with a sharply reduced majority, is working on forming a new cabinet for his third term in office.

Speaking Friday after Queen Elizabeth asked him to form a new government, Mr. Blair acknowledged that the Iraq war had been a divisive issue in the election campaign. Mr. Blair's Labor party won a record third straight election Thursday, but with a little more than 350 of the House of Commons' 646 seats -- down sharply from the last election. Analysts have blamed Mr. Blair's support for the war in Iraq for gains by the opposition Conservatives and Liberal Democrats. Mr. Blair has said he plans to serve a full term. But analysts say popular Finance Minister Gordon Brown could replace him before the next general election.

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