My fantasy frontbench

I spent most of the day thinking about what to right about today. I was going to do something away from politics but thought that may not be for the best. Instead, I’m going to write about and choose my dream fantasy frontbench from the MPs who are currently in parliament. I know, its cliched and most people don’t like this sort of thing but given the dreadful state of the government at the moment and a labour party shadow cabinet verging on complete centrism I thought why not give this a go.

Prime Minister:

I think this is most certainly an obvious one. Had the Labour party internally not sabotaged this man it could quite possibly be a reality right now. Jeremy Corbyn, as i wrote about on my previous blog, is quite clearly the soundest, nicest and most caring MP in my lifetime. He would provide strong leadership and radically alter the direction of this country. A man of integrity putting ordinary people first would be the greatest dream come true.

Chancellor:

Sticking with our previous shadow cabinet I would have to pick John McDonnell as chancellor. His performance at the dispatch box, the election manifesto costings and his loyalty to socialism makes him the perfect candidate. He is also from Liverpool so gets some extra scouse solidarity points.

Foreign Secretary:

For this position I have chosen Dianne Abbott. Diane has probably been the MP suffering the most from hateful and racist abuse on her social media platforms and directly to her personal offices. And yet she still stand up and comes back stronger and stronger and won’t be perturbed by those who try to silence her. Her voting record on the Iraq war, the renewal of trident and military intervention in foreign countries demonstrates that she would be a change to the past and would not be kowtowed by the USA on foreign policy.

Home secretary:

For home secretary I have decided to appoint Emily Thornberry. One thing I love about Emily is her sassiness. As seen following the 2017 general election in interviews with the BBC and ITV where she stuck it to those who thought Labour would be annihilated. Her voting record on domestic policies is also good. Always voting for equal rights for the LGBTQI community, for increasing welfare and benefits for those in our society who need it the most and, if truth be told, I did have a small crush on her at some point. I think its the voice.

Environmental Secretary:

One MP from out of my own party I do admire is Caroline Lucas. She has single handily carried and represented the green party in the House of Commons for a decade now and is always and will always push for stronger more urgent action on climate change. This combined with Labours green new deal plan would be an excellent move to see someone so dedicated to green issues leading on our environmental policy.

Education secretary:

Guess who’s back, back again, Becky’s back, tell a friend. Rebecca Long Bailey takes up the position she was wrongly sacked for. As a trainee teacher and hearing of RLB’s plans for education in just a short period of time I was impressed about how she had already set in motion Labour policy in regards to education. She has also backed the teaching unions on returning to schools only when safe to do so and tbh this would just be a massive fuck you to Keir.

Defence secretary:

For this post I looked and thought about who had opposed trident renewal and who would best for this role. In my opinion trident is a colossal waste of resources as its use would effectively wipe out human civilisation as we know it anyway as, if triggered, other countries would easily respond to it by triggering their own nuclear weapons. Therefore I am choosing Dawn Butler. Not only a member of the socialist campaign group, she is also been a fantastic MP and someone who has always backed the labour leadership under Jeremy Corbyn. She would also become the first black MP to hold the position and just the second female MP to hold the position.

Health and Social Care secretary:

I wanted to ensure when appointing cabinet ministers that, where possible, members had experience within that department. So, with that in mind I chose Dr Rosena Allin-Khan. She has been doing extra shifts in hospitals during the Covid – 19 crisis as well as representing her constituents and performing her duties as shadow minister for mental health. I’m confident she would ensure that privatisation in the NHS would be ended and that the NHS would be adequately funded and meeting targets. Plus she is a Liverpool FC fan so again extra points.

Transport secretary:

Sam Tarry would be an excellent choice in this role. He was only elected in the 2019 GE but his experience as the co-ordinator of Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership election in the 2016 contest will stand him in good stead. Also, being a TSSA union man who was their national political officer will aid him in designing labours transport policy and vision going forward. He will always put workers’ rights ahead of profiteering and bring railways back into public ownership.

Justice secretary:

Andy McDonald had held the shadow transport secretary role for 4 years prior to 2020 and is currently shadow SoS for employment rights. Andy, a member of the socialist campaign group and a proud northerner would be an excellent choice for justice secretary. His background in law and his fierce opposition to the bedroom tax places him in good stead to promote the rights and fight for justice for all of us.

International Development secretary:

The Labor party must oppose the merger of the DFID into the FCO. As such a person to do that would be Dan Carden. Previously he had been shadow SoS for DFID and did a good job in holding government to account whilst pushing for more and better responses to humanitarian aid around the world for those who need it. For me, a rising star of the Labour party and a future prime minister should be in this cabinet.

DWP Secretary:

Another member of the Socialist campaign group, Lloyd Russell-Moyle would be an excellent choice for this role. Lloyd has openly and strikingly called out this Tory government and its monstrous austerity with sincerity and passion. He has previously expressed his belief that the Tory party have killed people through austerity and I believe this shouldn’t be a taboo thing to say. Lloyd would fight 100% for this socialist government.

Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy:

Richard Burgon would be an excellent choice to continue and develop the work of Rebecca Long Bailey in this post. It is a crime that the current Labour front bench doesn’t have a position for Richard. His fantastic experience and determination to improve peoples lives alongside his creativity and innovation would help this government create a long term, post Covid – 19 strategy that promises a green revolution.

Housing, Communities & Local Gov. Secretary:

For this position another of our 2019 intake would be perfect for this role and that is Apsana Begum. Her experience working for Tower Hamlet council and advocating for the protection of local public services leave her best placed to understand and recognise what communities need. Also, given her father was the Tower Hamlets Community Housing Board Director and also mayor of Tower Hamlets it is likely she would want to preserve her father’s legacy of campaigning for high quality, affordable housing across the country. She has also been quoted as saying, “tackling inequalities and standing up for marginalised communities has always been key to me”. This leaves me confident that we would have a SoS extremely dedicated to local communities and local government.

DCMS Secretary:

Ian Byrne is my local MP and having been elected in 2019 had previously represented my local community and city of Liverpool in a great way. His work with fans supporting foodbanks, his understanding for the role sport and culture have in tackling austerity would leave him well placed to lead the DCMS in a socialist Labour government. Byrne also dedicated his time to helping his local community in Liverpool in developing and making PPE supplies for local hospitals, care homes and facilities that needed them. A strong union man and someone I would wholeheartedly support to be in cabinet.

International trade secretary:

I couldn’t allow any dream and labour cabinet to go by without including the excellent Ian Lavery. Ian has devoted his entire life both in politics and before politics to helping people and fighting for the rights of everyone. A strong believer in socialism, Ian would ensure we got a fair deal around the world and willingly operate with global partners. His record in parliament of standing up against austerity, period poverty and championing the rights and wellbeing of the most vulnerable in society. No socialist government should be without Ian Lavery.

Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster:

Imran Hussain was elected in 2015 and has supported Jeremy Corbyn since day one. He has experience of serving in the shadow cabinet and was one of the very few MP’s who voted against the welfare bill in 2015 defying Labour party whip. This action took tremendous courage to break the ship in one of his first actions as an MP. He would be an excellent choice as Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster helping with the running of the day to day activities of the cabinet.

Wales Secretary:

I strongly believe secretary of states for areas of the UK should be from those areas and have seats in those areas. With that in mind I would propose Beth Winter. Beth who has previously worked as a youth worker and in a food bank understands the challenges facing Wales. She is also a welsh speaker and took part in the climate strikes protest in the Welsh Sennad alongside members of her family. Beth would proudly promote Wales and represent them in government and in cabinet.

Scotland Secratary:

This area probably presents my biggest problem area. If I stuck by my criteria I would have to have Ian Murray in this position. But, lets be honest in who’s fantasy cabinet is Ian Murray in apart from Keir Starmers. With that in mind and my evident Scouse bias I would choose Kim Johnson to be our Scottish secretary. As a member of the socialist campaign group Kim would represent socialist views for the people of Scotland and as someone who has close ties to the unions she would protect workers rights north of the border.

Northern Ireland Secretary:

Again this is a difficult one. With Labour not actually standing in Northern Ireland I thought it would be difficult to match my commitments regarding being local and born in the area. However, Conor McGinn who represents a St Helens constituency would have been a choice for this. However, with him being on the right of the party it doesn’t sit right with me. This time then it looks like i may have to choose someone from the affiliate party of Labour, the SDLP in Northern Ireland. Therefore I would choose Claire Hanna.

Chief whip:

For someone who would be chief whip i thought about an experienced member of parliament and someone on the socialist campaign group. Jon Trickett was one of the 36 MPs who nominated Jeremy in 2015 and someone who has respect from both sides of the house. He would be an excellent choice in ensuring those rebellious traitors of the right of the Labour party towed the party line.

Leader of the house of commons:

This final pick for a socialist labour cabinet is Marsha de Cordova. I believe Marsha would be a great leader of the House of Commons. Not only has she championed to make the HoC more accessible for disabled people, she has performed brilliantly as an MP and delivered numerous excellent speeches which i suggest you check out.

So there we have it. My fantasy cabinet of members of parliament in the House of Commons right now. A dynamic and broad mix of the very best of our party alongside a couple from members of other parties. My cabinet from current MPs breakdowns as:

  • 11 male, 11 female
  • 15 white, 7 Bame
  • 11 represent southern constituencies, 9 represent northern constituencies and 1 representative from Wales and Northern Ireland.
  • Average age of the cabinet is 49.7 years of age

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