Introducing the new Shadow Cabinet

At lunchtime today, Jeremy Corbyn, the new leader of the Labour Party, finalised his Shadow Cabinet to “change the face of British politics.”

At lunchtime today, Jeremy Corbyn, the new leader of the Labour Party, finalised his Shadow Cabinet to “change the face of British politics.” Corbyn secured 59.5% in the first round of voting, a decisive win that has given him a strong mandate to lead and quelled rumours of an internal coup led by those who oppose his “hard-left” policies. You can find the full list of his cabinet below, with new positions created, including a Shadow Minister of Mental Health and Shadow Minister for Young People and Voter Registration. Read on for Interel’s insight into the 5 things you need to know about the new Shadow Cabinet.

5 things you need to know: 

  1. Corbynomics will be priority – The appointment of left-winger John McDonnell MP as Shadow Chancellor against the advice of more centrist members of the Labour Party, indicates Corbyn’s non-negotiable stance in prioritising his anti-austerity platform. John McDonnell is one of Corbyn’s strongest political allies and ideological soulmates; he will seek to use this relationship to ensure a consistent anti-austerity message over the party and to achieve strong centralised leadership.
  2. Areas of concession – He has already faced fierce resistance from within the parliamentary party at the appointment of McDonnell so will use other cabinet positions to make some concessions to the centre of the party. For instance, the appointment of Maria Eagle MP in Defence, who has previously backed Trident in parliamentary votes, may indicate this is an area which Corbyn is willing to concede on. In addition, Arch-Blairite Lord Falconer has been appointed into Justice to oppose Gove on Human Rights Act reform. The challenge for Corbyn will be in compromising on such areas to achieve party unity whilst not alienating his band of supporters by appearing to “u-turn” on his campaign issues.
  3. Changes to the rules of the game – Corbyn declined early opportunities to address the Nation by snubbing most media appearances and notably not appearing on Sunday’s Andrew Marr Show and this morning’s Today Programme. This illustrates his distaste for the mainstream media and subsequent political coverage. At some point, however, he will need to address the nation and his supporters. Likewise, Corbyn has already said he is finding out from the Speaker whether it would be possible to have a rolling spokesperson to carry out Prime Minister’s Questions and used his first email as leader to appeal to his electorate in submitting a question to the Prime Minister this Wednesday. Should the Conservatives exercise a degree of caution in opposing Corbyn? With such changes in internal style and governance occurring it would seem to us that the Conservatives should lay low for a while until the Corbyn target settles.
  4. European Referendum – The messaging out of the Corbyn camp has already been ambiguous on the EU Referendum, with Shadow Foreign Secretary Hilary Benn stating Labour will ‘fight for Britain to stay in EU’ whilst former Shadow Business Secretary, Chuka Umunna listed Corbyn’s anti-EU stance as his primary reason for his cabinet resignation. Deputy leader, Tom Watson MP, described the new cabinet process as “heralding intellectual curiosity,” where debate will be open on these key issues, but could this mean Corbyn would suspend collective responsibility on the referendum?
  5. How do we engage and how “new” really is the Shadow Cabinet? The media has focused on the resignations, refusals and non-appointments from the previous Shadow Cabinet, however, it is important to note that many older faces and “big-hitters” in the previous Shadow Cabinet are returning. Therefore there is an important opportunity to engage with them in their new briefs. Whilst it might be tempting to avoid engaging with the more unknown anti-business elements, many of those in the relevant teams are people that welcome working with finance and business, in particular, Angela Eagle, Chris Bryant, Lord Falconer, Andy Burnham, Owen Smith and Gloria de Piero.

The new Shadow Cabinet:

Leader of the Opposition and Leader of the Labour Party
Jeremy Corbyn MP

Deputy Leader of the Labour Party, Party Chair and Shadow Minister for the Cabinet Office
Tom Watson MP

Shadow First Secretary of State, Shadow Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills
Angela Eagle MP

Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer
John McDonnell MP

Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury
Seema Malhotra MP

Shadow Home Secretary
Andy Burnham MP

Shadow Foreign Secretary
Hilary Benn MP

Opposition Chief Whip
Rosie Winterton MP

Shadow Secretary of State for Health
Heidi Alexander MP

Shadow Secretary of State for Education
Lucy Powell MP

Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
Owen Smith MP

Shadow Secretary of State for Defence
Maria Eagle MP

Shadow Lord Chancellor, Shadow Secretary of State for Justice
Lord Falconer of Thoroton

Shadow Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Shadow Minister for the Constitutional Convention
Jon Trickett MP

Shadow Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change
Lisa Nandy MP

Shadow Leader of the House of Commons
Chris Bryant MP

Shadow Secretary of State for Transport
Lilian Greenwood MP

Shadow Secretary of State for Northern Ireland
Vernon Coaker MP

Shadow Secretary of State for International Development
Diane Abbott MP

Shadow Secretary of State for Scotland
Ian Murray MP

Shadow Secretary of State for Wales
Nia Griffith MP

Shadow Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Kerry McCarthy MP

Shadow Minister for Women and Equalities
Kate Green MP

Shadow Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport
Michael Dugher MP

Shadow Minister for Young People and Voter Registration
Gloria De Piero MP

Shadow Minister for Mental Health
Luciana Berger MP

Shadow Leader of the House of Lords
Baroness Smith of Basildon

Lords Chief Whip
Lord Bassam of Brighton

Shadow Attorney General
Catherine McKinnell MP

Shadow Minister without Portfolio
Jonathan Ashworth MP

Shadow Minister for Housing and Planning

– See more at:


Lauren Roden

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