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Margaret Woodhall
Woodhall


Member of Parliament
In office
April 18, 3374 – January 10, 3418
Constituency
Ulbrach

Chairperson of the GNP Parliamentary Party
In office
March 1, 3405 – September 11, 3414
Preceded by

Chairperson of the CNP Parliamentary Party
In office
May 3, 3403 – March 1, 3405
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Office dissolved

Vice Chairperson of the CNP Parliamentary Party
In office
August 15, 3399 – May 3, 3403
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Rhys Narberth

Chairwoman of the GNP
In office
October 1, 3412 – December 15, 3418
Preceded by
Succeeded by

Prime Minister of Dranland
In office
December 1, 3414 – May 2, 3417
Preceded by
Succeeded by

Born
August 13, 3350
Iglesia Mayor, Ulbrach
Political party
CNP (3393-3405)
GNP (3364-3393; 3405-Present)
Spouse
Matthew Woodhall
Children
Amanda (b. 3377)
Daniel (b. 3380)
Jeremy (b. 3383)
Angela (b. 3387)
Residence
Iglesia Mayor, Ulbrach
Alma Mater
Dranian University
Religion
Hosianism

 Margaret Woodhall (née Cricklow) was a Dranish politician from the Grand National Party (GNP). In 3393 she defected from the GNP and joined the Conservative National Party (CNP). She is currently serving as a Member of Parliament. She was the Parliamentary Chairperson of the CNP between 3403 and 3405, and, after being one of the main architects of the re-union between the GNP and CNP in 3405, of the GNP since the merger. In October 3412, she succeeded Richard Branstead-Smith as GNP Chairperson. Finally, she also became Prime Minister of Dranland in December 3414, which she remained until May 3417 when she was gravely injured during an assassination attempt against her.

Early lifeEdit

Margaret Cricklow was born on August 15, 3350 in Iglesia Mayor to Joseph Cricklow, a bricklayer and Marta Cricklow (née Ivarra-Riberol), a clerical worker. At the time of her birth, she had four siblings: Penelope (b. 3340), Darryl (b. 3343), Kevin (b. 3345) and Frederick (b. 3348). She would later have two younger siblings, Irene (b. 3353) and Laura (b. 3355). As a child of working class parents, she attended a local state school, until she reached high school. She received a scholarship to a prestigious secondary school for disadvantaged but academically elite students, and topped her year every year.

She attended the Dranian University after leaving high school in 3368, and majored in both law and economics, arguably the most intellectually demanding of the courses offered at the University. This double-degree course took five years to complete, but would have required eight if studied separately. Cricklow graduated in 3373, once again topping her class. After a very brief career as a lawyer lasting just several months, she decided to enter politics.

Early political careerEdit

In 3374, Cricklow as nominated by the local GNP branch to contest the Parliamentary elections in April, in preference to a number of more seasoned candidates, including a local Councillor and a prominent businessman,after the incumbent retired. She had the luck to be nominated to stand in a safe seat, and won convincingly in two-party preferences after nearly winning an outright victory in the primary vote. She managed to secure re-election in December 3375, although given the swing to the GNP and the safeness of the seat, this was hardly a difficult feat. A year later, she married Matthew Woodhall.

Woodhall's grasp of policy and rhetorical skill quickly won her the attention of the GNP leadership and her Parliamentary colleagues, although the leftist parties were quick to attack her unapologetically right-wing stances. However, despite her familiarity with policy, it was noted that she was better at gaining support for a policy than for shaping one, and she was made a junior party whip in 3378.

In 3379, Woodhall easily won re-election to Parliament. However, shortly after, her political career was stymied by the rise of Delia Breckinridge, who became the leader of the GNP in 3381. Although ideologically similar, they disliked each other personally, although years later this ill-will would dissapate. Woodhall was thus denied promotion. In the elections of 3383, she was again re-elected and became a junior Government whip in 3384 after the GNP entered Government.

Due to the stalling of her political career by her personal animosity with Breckinridge, Woodhall considered leaving politics in prior to the election of 3385. She was still young, and could easily have picked up her legal career again. However, her husband Matthew managed to persuade her to stay on in politics to give herself an opportunity to "make a difference", saying that she might have a promising legal career, but would ultimately live an insignificant life if she headed in that direction. She ran for election and won.

In 3389, she would win a sixth term. By now, Breckinridge was reconciled with Woodhall, who supported her against Janice LeCoultre when the latter challenged Breckinridge for GNP Chairpersonship. Breckinridge was defeated, and LeCoultre, angered by Woodhall's opposition, forced Breckinridge to dump her as a whip on the pain of a motion of no confidence. A disgruntled Woodhall returned to the backbenches days after the foundation of the CNP by Elaine Duvalle. She secretly confided to her husband that she was considering defecting, but did not do so yet.

DefectionEdit

In early April, 3393, Delia Breckinridge resigned as Prime Minister after losing a vote of confidence, a move which was expected to endorse her Government, although narrowly, but spectacularly backfired with a significant part of the GNP refusing to back her. The Popular Party's Tom Marshall, Deputy Prime Minister, became the interim Prime Minister, with Janice LeCoultre widely expected to assume the office after the elections, barring an unlikely PAC victory.

The Sanctity of Life and Marriage Act, proposed by the CNP in early 3393, would set off a political firestorm The GNP ordered its MPs to vote against the bill in accordance with the party line, despite the pleas of traditionalist members such as Jack O'Keeffe in an open letter, with severe penalties for those that dared to rebel against the three-line whip. The result was a massive backbench revolt in April, where twenty GNP MPs including Woodhall voted for the bill, and Delia Breckinbridge abstained. Eventually, all twenty-one dissenting members left the GNP and joined the CNP.

Woodhall became the CNP's Chief Whip immediately after her defection. In June 3393, despite a hard-fought campaign, Woodhall lost her constituency. She was, however, still elected to Parliament through the CNP party list. She retained her position as CNP Chief Whip, and her skill allowed the CNP to go through the next four years in Parliament without a single backbench revolt. Meanwhile, in August 3396, she was made First Secretary, the party's chief organisation official, to oversee the first Convention elections held by the CNP.

Woodhall won her regained her constituency in 3397 in a tight election. After the CNP performed poorly in the elections, confidence in its leader, Delia Breckinridge, was reduced. Within months, several major political figures in the party were lining up to challenge her for the leadership, including Woodhall. However, she subsequently pulled out in favour of the successful candidate, Geoffrey Fox. Her later run for party President failed.

CNP leadershipEdit

In August 3399, Woodhall contested the Parliamentary Chairpersonship of the CNP after Geoffrey Fox lost a spill motion; he was nevertheless re-elected. Woodhall then decided to challenge Elaine Duvalle for the Vice Chairpersonship. She was narrowly successful, and resigned as both Chief Whip and First Secretary; both these positions went to Orito Mori.

As Vice Chairperson, Woodhall would be a vocal supporter of a GNP-CNP merger, emphasising not the differences between the parties but the similarities and the need for unity against the new socialist parties which she accused of attacking Dranish liberty. After a failed run for party President in late 3401, Woodhall would lead the push for greater co-operation with the GNP, and had her party endorse Hideo Enomoto, the GNP's successful Presidential candidate. This made Woodhall among the most prominent Dranish politicians. Additionally, given Geoffrey Fox's more placid manner, Woodhall was viewed as the CNP's attack dog against other parties.

In early 3402, Geoffrey Fox became the Defence Minister in a right-wing coalition. He announced an intention to resign as CNP leader to better focus on his ministerial responsibilities, and did so in May. Woodhall took over as acting Chairperson, and was elected to the position in her own right, facing Elaine Duvalle in the final round. Woodhall's successor as Vice Chairperson was Rhys Narberth.

As leader, Woodhall would continue her often vitriolic attacks against the leftist parties and the far-right Valdorian Blue Shirt Movement, slamming legislation aimed at the nationalisation of train services and at banning the use of titles of nobility. She also defended the CNP and increasingly the GNP from opposition attacks, and was keen as before to emphasise the unity between the CNP and GNP.

Woodhall was instrumental in engineering the CNP's merger into the GNP. The leaderships of the two parties regularly negotiated, with Richard Branstead-Smith, her counterpart, dominating proceedings along with her. Eventually, by late 3404, they had brokered a merger deal. The CNP Convention endorsed the deal in November, as did the party's membership in January the next year. The GNP also approved the merger. The two parties merged in March 3405.

Return to the GNPEdit

At the pre-merger joint election of the united party's new leadership team, the GNP and CNP elected Woodhall their Parliamentary Leader, after she refused to run for the party's most senior position, the Chairperson, in a very clear victory over any rivals. She became a member of the GNP once again beginning in March 3405, and assumed her new position at the same time.

As parliamentary leader, she was often at the forefront of clashes with the left-wing DSP and its leader Butterworth, whose proposal to ban private education institutions she responded to with harsh criticism:

"Butterworth is a communist who wants to crush the aspirations and desires of our children and sees them as human raw material for the implementation of his vile collectivist utopia. George Butterworth portrays himself a democrat at every occasion, but today he has revealed that he is an authoritarian that considers himself superior to the masses, because he sees society as a herd of sheeps that he can adjust at will so that it fits his extremist agenda. He will outlaw everything that does not appeal to him, meaning that he wishes to use state coercion to impose his personal values upon the people. Yes, Mr Butterworth, I am not afraid to say that you are by no means better than the VBSM fascists. You are a radical, extremist, communist who besmirches the name of democracy by applying this term to your party's fascist policies".

After the 3409 elections, in which the PLA-GNP-PP alliance fell short of a majority, Woodhall was the spearhead of criticism against Green Solidarity leader Frank Alvarez after he had proposed a left-wing government including the VBSM, which was widely regarded as fascist. Woodhall stated:

"Some time ago, I have stated that PAC's Daniel Leite is the 'king of hypocrisy'. I wish to apologize for this folly, because that prize belongs, without a doubt, to Frank Alvarez. His decision to call for making the VBSM socially acceptable by treating it like a normal party is a capitulation to extremism, fascism and, as we have recently seen, racism. However, none of these vices is apparently loathsome enough for Mr Alvarez and his party that it would make them refrain from co-operation with the militant zealots who have proposed such outrageous measures as banning sexual education at school, barring homosexuals from a military career, making adultery a capital offence and outlawing same-sex relationships. The GS is unscrupulous enough to accept these discriminatory assaults aiming at stigmatizing and terrorizing sexual minorities if it allows for the implementation of economic socialism. The GS has lost all legitimation to call itself 'progressive', for it is willing to abandon progressive principles whenever an occasion occurs to satisfy its greed for political power. Mr Alvarez, have fun with your racist, homophobe, far-right buddies, for the sane rest of the nation will be shunning you from this day.

GNP ChairwomanEdit

On May 4, 3412, more than one year ahead of the regular election date, it was revealed that Woodhall intended to challenge the Incumbent, Richard Branstead-Smith, for the position of GNP Chairperson. However, she also stated that her candidacy was not due to opposition against the Incumbent's policies, which were similar to her own ideals.

At the party convention held to determine the Chairman which was held on October 1 of the same year - earlier than originally thought due to the collapse of the PLA -, Woodhall's candidacy turned out successful: She prevailed in the first round, winning a plurality of 42.9 percent and leading her rivals, Branstead-Smith and Education Minister Jenny Maldonado. In the runoff, she defeated the incumbent party leader 55 to 45 percent. In her victory speech, she sought to portray her party as the foremost anti-socialist force in Dranland:

"In the last tenure, the socialists have succeeded in abolishing private property, allowing the state to seize the people's assets whenever it fits the governing politicians. Their cheap talk of the 'greater good' is a thinly concealed excuse for subordinating the people to the institutionalized violence that is the state. Collectivism does not lead to the rule of society itself, but to unrestrained powers for the political elites who see humanity as a raw material that they can utilize for their misguided social engineering. They're claiming to establish a social order that is based on 'social justice' and 'fair distribution of resources', however it becomes clear that both terms are empty phrases if we ask ourselves how a society whose order is merely based on a governmental decree could ever be just. Only when the state limits itself to making property rights inviolable, securing private autonomy and ensuring human rights and to defend our nation with a strong military, men are free and our system is just. We must break the VBSM-GS-PAC-DSP majority in order to restore freedom and to turn away from the path to absolute communism."

The election turned out a huge success for the GNP, which gained ten percent up to 27 percent of the vote, becoming strongest party ever since 3397. Woodhall declared that the victory showed that the GNP-CNP re-union had finally paid off: "There we see the long-term effect of the GNP-CNP re-union, despite all the doubts about alleged fissures along the lines of libertarians and conservatives."

Nevertheless, Woodhall's explicit goal to obtain a majority for the traditional GNP-PP alliance had failed, and thus she reluctantly agreed to endorsing a GS-led "centre-left-wing" cabinet including the PP, however she later renounced her support when DSP leader George Butterworth proposed to provide full public funding for all abortions, which was heavily criticized by Woodhall:

" (...) this proposal equals actively encouraging conducting abortions through dishing out free funds for eradicating unborn life to everyone. People will perceive the despicable idea that it is justified to make society pay for the elimination of "unwanted" children whose existence derives from irresponsible behavior on the part of its parents, yet we should always keep in mind that the babies bear no guilt for that. The GNP will staunchly fight against state-sanctioned mass-abortions."

Her comments provoked a strong backlash from the part of the DSP, but also caused modest tensions in the GNP parliamentary party, which was still split in either supporting or opposing abortion rights. Nevertheless, the whole of the parliamentary faction opposed the reform proposed by the DSP, due to its consequences such as a growth in government. Woodhall also backpedaled after she stated later in the course of the debate that she generally opposed abortion.

Her government, despite lacking an own majority, managed to pass a copyright liberalization and to ward off a DWC-sympathetic subsidy system as well as a nationalization of forests through provincial governments.

Prime MinistershipEdit

Despite clashes, Woodhall was able to reach an agreement with the opposition on forming a government, namely a GNP-PP minority coalition, which was considered ideologically more coherent than the previous proposals. Thus, Woodhall was sworn in as Prime Minister as of December 1, 3414. Despite lacking an own majority, government succeeded in liberalizing the copyright laws and warding off a couple of left-wing bills as well.

In the campaign ahead of the 3416 elections, Woodhall participated in two debates, one on foreign and defence and the other on domestic policy, in which she aggressively faced off with Green Solidarity leader Frank Alvarez after the latter had linked the government's support of nuclear weapons to the events of the Welsh Genocide.

Political analysts stated that Dranland was hit by what they called "Woodhallmania" after her belligerent debate performances boosted her popularity to unprecedented heights, however the number of her staunch opponents also grew rapidly, plunging Dranland into political polarisation. Woodhall went on to win the elections in November despite minor losses, and observers unanimously concluded that the GNP had only won due to the Prime Minister's popularity. Even though the GNP-PP alliance fell short of an absolute majority by 20 seats, Woodhall claimed the premiership again and rejected DSP leader George Butterworth's call to resign.

On the initiative of Deputy Prime Minister and Popular Party leader Jose Gomez, the government then proposed several bills aimed at rolling back most reforms introduced by the left-wing, such as the nationalization of TOCs or the regulation of stock markets.

Assassination Attempt Edit

On May 2, 3417, Woodhall was shot two times by an unknown assassin while she was on her way to the weekly cabinet meeting. Her deputy Gomez and Finance Minister Adrienne LeCoultre-Overstraten, who had accompanied her, were able to escape, however the Prime Minister suffered major injuries and fell into coma, with doctors agreeing that a full recovery was extremely improbable. Many prominent politicians such as President Branstead-Smith and Defence Minister Fox as well as the Hulstrian government and Hosian Archbishop Leonardo Baldomero expressed their regrets over Woodhall's fate. Also, the government of Hulstria condemned the assault.

Following her assassination, it was speculated that radical socialist sect Sons of Jalal (named after Jalal Al-e-Ahmad, a former dictator of Badara) or remains of the overthrown Hulstrian KSP regime, on which Woodhall's government had put sanctions, could have been involved in the crime. Several months, after the incident, a Kyo man tried to gain access to Woodhall's hospital but was stopped by security forces.

In the ensuing years, Dranland went through a period of instability and radicalization, especially in the Province of Valdor. Woodhall eventually died in April 3422 from a heart failure.

Electoral recordEdit

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!colspan=5 align=center|Parliament (West Hill, Ulbrach) |- !align=center|Election !align=center|Primary Vote !align=center|% !align=center|2PP !align=center|% |- |align=left|Apr 3374||85,367||47.2||107,441||62.9 |- |align=left|Dec 3375||90,832||50.1||colspan=2 align=center|N/A |- |align=left|Dec 3379||98,348||54.7||colspan=2 align=center|N/A |- |align=left|Dec 3383||95,772||52.1||colspan=2 align=center|N/A |- |align=left|Jun 3385||94,582||50.8||colspan=2 align=center|N/A |- |align=left|Jun 3389||98,240||53.3||colspan=2 align=center|N/A |- |align=left|Jun 3393||56,304||23.7||103,181||48.2 |- |align=left|Jun 3397||70,072||29.9||105,516||50.9 |- |align=left|Jun 3401||75,103||35.8||112,671||53.7 |- |align=left|Jun 3405||75,954||36.3||112,013||54.1 |- |align=left|Jun 3409||82,819||40.0||110,356||53.3 |- |align=left|Nov 3412||115,739||55.9||colspan=2 align=center|N/A |- |}

GNP Leadership Election, 3412 (First Round) GNP Leadership Election, 3412

50 / 100

|Candidate |Round 1 % |Swing |Round 2 % |Swing |- |Margaret Woodhall |42.9% |+-0 |54.5% |11.6 |- |Richard Branstead-Smith |38.6% |7.6 |45.5% |6.9 |- |Jenny Maldonado |18.5% |+-0 |colspan=2|Eliminated |}

Personal lifeEdit

Margaret Woodhall is married to Matthew Woodhall. They married in 3376 several years after first meeting as fellow law students in 3372. Matthew Woodhall is now one of the most senior judges in the Dranish national court system. Woodhall has four children. Amanda Woodhall (b. 3377) is an employee of the Foreign Ministry. Daniel (b. 3380) and Jeremy (b. 3383) have opted for careers as a doctor and a sociologist, respectively, although the latter has yet to complete his studies at Dranian University. Angela (b. 3387) is studying economics, also at Dranian University, and already has some experience in student politics.

Juche3 Democratic People's Republic of Kyoseon
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