On International Women’s Day we reminded you what a difference a Labour victory on May 7 would make for women’s political representation.
The contrast between Cameron’s cabinet, announced today, and Labour’s Shadow Cabinet underlines that.
In spite of all his efforts – Cameron has only been able to appoint 9 women out of 29 members of cabinet are women – that’s 31%.
By contrast Labour’s shadow cabinet is more or less 50:50 – 14 women and 15 men. [see below for full details]

Yvette Cooper with newly elected Leeds Councillor Julie Heselwood
Yvette Cooper with newly elected Leeds Councillor Julie Heselwood

And as we said in our previous post – that representation of women would – on the basis of the shadow team – have extended right down through non-cabinet ministerial positions. Virtually no department of government would have lacked a woman in office. There would have been a massive shift in the gender balance of power.

The difference between Labour and the Tories comes down to a simple question of numbers – the Tories simply have so many fewer women MPs.

There are now 191 women MPs – c 29% of the total. Of those 191, well over half – 99 – are Labour MPs. Although the number of Labour MPs has declined – from 258 to 232 – the number of Labour women MPs has actually risen – from 87 to 99.

42.7% of Labour MPs are now women.

Yorkshire and the Humber, by the way, is now fifth in the ranking for women MPs – with over 30%. But we’re still behind the NE – which tops the league at well over 40% – in part because it’s such a strong Labour region.

The Tories, in spite of having increased their number of MPs from 303 to 331, have only increased the number of women from 47 to 68. Only 20.5% of Tory MPs are women, even after their victory.

The LibDems now have no women MPs. But then, they have virtually no MPs.

The new parliament has the highest proportion of women ever – a tribute largely to Labour’s efforts over many years to get women represented.
But we didn’t get that huge number of women in office we promised you.
Just another difference the electorate didn’t choose to make.

Labour’s new Shadow Cabinet is:


Leader of the Opposition and Acting Leader of the Labour Party 
Harriet Harman MP


Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer
 Chris Leslie MP


Shadow Foreign Secretary 
Hilary Benn MP


Shadow Home Secretary 
Yvette Cooper MP


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


Opposition Chief Whip 
Rosie Winterton MP


Shadow Secretary of State for Health 
Andy Burnham MP


Shadow Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills
 Chuka Umunna MP


Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions 
Rachel Reeves MP


Shadow Secretary of State for Education 
Tristram Hunt MP


Shadow Secretary of State for Defence
 Vernon Coaker MP


Shadow Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government
 Emma Reynolds MP


Shadow Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change 
Caroline Flint MP


Shadow Leader of the House of Commons and Chair of the National Policy Forum
 Angela Eagle MP


Shadow Secretary of State for Transport
 Michael Dugher MP


Shadow Secretary of State for Northern Ireland 
Ivan Lewis MP


Shadow Secretary of State for International Development
 Mary Creagh MP


Shadow Secretary of State for Scotland 
Ian Murray MP


Shadow Secretary of State for Wales 
Owen Smith MP


Shadow Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Maria Eagle MP


Shadow Minister for the Cabinet Office
Lucy Powell MP 


Shadow Minister without Portfolio and Deputy Party Chair
Jon Trickett MP


Shadow Minister for Women and Equalities
Gloria De Piero MP
 

Shadow Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport
Chris Bryant MP


Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury 
Shabana Mahmood MP


Shadow Leader of the House of Lords
Baroness Royall of Blaisdon


Lords Chief Whip 
Lord Bassam of Brighton

Also attending Shadow Cabinet:


Shadow Minister for Care and Older People
Liz Kendall MP


Shadow Attorney General
Lord Bach


29 people – 14 women and 15 men.

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