POLITICS

Jeremy Corbyn Has Already Had More Shadow Cabinet Members Than Ed Miliband Or David Cameron

63 so far.

09/02/2017 17:21 GMT | Updated 09/02/2017 18:59 GMT
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Jeremy Corbyn

Jeremy Corbyn has had more shadow cabinet members in his 17 months as Labour leader than his predecessor Ed Miliband did during his five years in charge.

So far 63 have served in Corbyn’s top team, including full members and those attending shadow cabinet, The Huffington Post UK has calculated. Some 46 served in Miliband’s.

David Cameron had just 42 in his shadow cabinet during the five years he was Tory opposition leader.

On Thursday Corbyn added three people to his top team, and moved one shadow cabinet member to a new role as he began his third reshuffle as Labour leader, triggered after a string of frontbenchers resigned over a vote on Brexit.

The number of those who have served in Corbyn’s shadow cabinet is now just two short of those in Cameron’s top team during his entire 11-years as Tory leader.

Yui Mok/PA Wire
Clive Lewis

Corbyn announced on Thursday that Rebecca Long-Bailey would replace Clive Lewis as shadow business secretary, with Peter Dowd moving to fill Long-Bailey’s position as shadow chief secretary to the Treasury.

Sue Hayman will replace Rachael Maskell as shadow environment secretary and Christina Rees will replace Jo Stevens as shadow Welsh secretary.

Corbyn said: “I’m pleased to announce appointments to Labour’s shadow cabinet. We have a wealth of talent in our party and the strength of our shadow team will develop Labour’s alternative plan to rebuild and transform Britain, so that no one and no community is left behind.”

Corbyn had been forced into a reshuffle after frontbench resignations over his order that Labour MPs back the EU (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill in the Commons.

When passed after it goes through the House of Lords, the legislation will give Theresa May the authority to trigger the start of the UK’s formal exit from the EU.

By convention, frontbenchers who break such an order either quit or are fired.

Corbyn still has to fill several junior positions vacated by MPs who defied the order.

On Wednesday key Corbyn ally Clive Lewis quit as shadow business secretary so he could oppose the bill in its third reading, bringing the total number of shadow cabinet resignations to four.  

In the past two weeks shadow minister for early years Tulip Siddiq, shadow environment secretary Rachael Maskell and shadow equalities minister Dawn Butler all resigned from the front bench. 

Corbyn’s first reshuffle, in January 2016, took 34 hours to complete.