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29 September 2010

Fantasy Shadow Cabinet, anyone?

Here are some brief and semi-serious suggestions for Ed M from me. Who would you like to see?

By Mehdi Hasan

The full list of MPs standing for the shadow cabinet has been published — 49 names in all, or roughly a fifth of the Parliamentary Labour Party (PLP).

David Miliband has wisely decided to withdraw from the front bench to avoid the media’s “perpetual, distracting and destructive attempts to find division where there is none, and splits where they don’t exist”. Jack Dromey, former Labour Party treasurer, new MP and husband of Harriet Harman, isn’t running.

But Diane Abbott, the MP for Hackney and former Labour leadership contender and PLP lefty, has put her name forward. It’s a risky strategy for Diane — she came fifth in the leadership race and isn’t the most popular of MPs.

But, of the names we know, here’s what I’d do if I was Ed Miliband (assuming these people, below, are even elected!), with some of the jobs (and in no particular order):

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Shadow deputy prime minister (new job!) — Alan Johnson

Shadow chancellor — Ed Balls

Shadow foreign secretary — Peter Hain

Shadow home secretary — Sadiq Khan

Shadow health secretary — Andy Burnham

Shadow education secretary — Yvette Cooper

Shadow defence secretary — Eric Joyce

Shadow justice secretary — John Denham

Shadow Cabinet Office minister — David Lammy

Shadow business secretary — Liam Byrne

Shadow communities secretary — Hilary Benn

Shadow work and pensions secretary — Caroline Flint

Shadow energy and climate change secretary — Douglas Alexander

Shadow international development secretary — Jim Murphy

Shadow environment secretary — Emily Thornberry

Shadow transport secretary — John Healey

This is not at all scientific, and lacks the required number of women (!).

Paul Waugh has done his own list here.

So, who would you appoint and what jobs would give them?