Conservative Home's debate blogs


  • DVD rental
  • Conservative Books
My Photo

Conservative blogs

Blog powered by Typepad

  • Tracker 2
  • Extreme Tracker

« Sunday Telegraph endorses David Cameron | Main | David Davis insists that he can still win leadership »


Yet another Anon

Presumably Boris Johnson if he was promoted to being Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport would be expected to resign as Editor of the Spectator as he had said he would do in the past - it is no more credible for someone to be in that post and be a major editor than for a Secretary of State for Health to be running a Health Company or a Tobacco Company. Imagine a Secretary of State for the dti being a major leader of an industry or a Trade Union Leader.

Simon C

The key question is Frank Field, Tim. You may have thought that my prediction of his appointment to Shadow Work & Pensions was merely fanciful (I certainly did). But here's today's Sunday Telegraph:

Yet another Anon

Frank Field's political career is finished, his solutions were too expensive - there is inevitably a choice while maintaining overall welfare spending at or below a current proportion of GDP, increased universality will only work if rates of benefit relative to average earnings are lower, otherwise the numbers of people eligible have to be restricted in some way through stigma, workfare requirements or replacing benefits with low interest loans, or simply as in Japan state benefits can be restricted to the severely disabled and elderly with no provision for the able bodied.

Simon C

Editor - are you going to stick your neck out & let us have your predictions?

Yet another Anon

What about Peter Lilley as Shadow Secretary of State for Work & Pensions?

John Redwood as Shadow Home Secretary.

IDS as Shadow Defence Secretary.

David Davis as Shadow Foreign Secretary

Julie Kirkbride as Shadow dti Secretary

George Osborne as Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury

Malcolm Rifkind as Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer

Theresa May as Shadow International Development Secretary

Liam Fox as Shadow Health Secretary

David Willetts as Shadow Transport Secretary and Shadow Welsh Secretary

Michael Ancram as Secretary of State for Ulster, Scotland and Constitutional Affairs

Oliver Letwin as Shadow Leader of the House of Commons

Andrew Lansley as Shadow Secretary for defra

Alan Duncan as Shadow Secretary of State for Local Government & Communities

Caroline Spelman as Shadow Secretary for Education & DCMS

Lord Strathclyde keeping his position as Shadow Leader of the House of Lords

Francis Maude as Party Chairman and probably David MacLean remaining as Chief Whip.

Alastair Matlock

Frank Field has always seemed rather out of place in the Labour party to me. I think many of his colleagues were suspicious of his friendship with Margaret Thatcher.


I wld love it if you were right about FF, Simon. He is one of the finest parliamentarians of our age.

>>>>>Frank Field has always seemed rather out of place in the Labour party to me. I think many of his colleagues were suspicious of his friendship with Margaret Thatcher.<<<<<
Isn't Tony Benn a big pal of Oliver Letwin, I know it's somebody who sounded really unlikely.

Doesn't neccessarily mean anything - apparently King Charles I was a big pal of James Fox despite him being the founder of the Quakers.


There needs to be a massive clearout of the Shadow Cabinet, get rid of the old-timers and bring in young, electable faces. Bringing back Hague and IDS would be a retrograde step.

James Burdett

I think that whilst bringing Hague and IDS back to the fore is not without risk, the fact of the matter is that to a greater or lesser extent both are more respected now than when they were each leader. I think the benefit would outweigh the risk.

Yet another Anon

William Hague shows little interest in returning in the next few years though, he has his business career and unless the Conservatives are showing signs of being on course for government in mid term I can't actually see him joining the Shadow Cabinet - whatever the state of the Shadow Cabinet after the new leader takes over there are likely to be a few changes before the next General Election as possibly 1 or 2 decide it's time to drop out for family reasons or because they don't want to do it anymore and in response to Government reshuffles. Who knows Tony Blair might even go for further restructuring of ministries.

Samuel Coates

You beat me to it Ed, I was thinking about my shadow cabinet the other day and was going to suggest it! (i think i did ages ago)

Would it be too much to have a focus each day on a different position? It would give us a space for proper debate about each one, although choices are formed by the team surrounding them so it might not be too useful after all!

It would be useful to look at the more minor positions, to see which new MPs should be on the up.

Agree about Frank Field MP, a principled and capable man.. if I lived over the pond (Mersey) I would vote for him, though would support the local association so that a raving socialist didnt get in after him with an unassailable majority!

I'm interested in International Development as much as any position (was a bit miffed at the Davids when they joked about giving the overseas portfolio to the other if they won, on Sky News) and would probably go for Gary Streeter - the Chair of the Human Rights Commission - although there are other capable candidates.


What about Peter Lilley as Shadow Secretary of State for Work & Pensions?

He could then re-visit the CSA he set up ! Maybe even bring Jeremy Mayhew back from the BBC to be his "adviser".


"Frank Field has always seemed rather out of place in the Labour party to me."

Frank Field did start out as a Tory when he was a teenager - he left the Conservative party when he was 16 or 17 over the Tory party's attitude towards South African apartheid.

Daniel Vince-Archer

With regards women in the Shadow Cabinet, personally I'd like to see a Spelman/May double act for the public services portfolios. Seeing as May has already held the Education portfolio, I'd give her Health and give Education to Spelman. Kirkbride could be damned by her support for Davis, and the trouble with having so much choice for so few positions is that it's hard to find a position for her. The logical one would be Culture, Media and Sport but IIRC she held this portfolio under Iain Duncan Smith's leadership and was demoted when Michael Howard became leader.

Terry Keen

If Frank Field had his way, I would be out of a job (I work at the CSA, unless I can find something else, which is doubtful), so I am pleased that he won't!

It will be interesting to see what Sir Malcolm Rifkind becomes next week.

The comments to this entry are closed.

About Conservative Home


  • Conservative Home's
    free eMailing List
    Enter your name and email address below: