Corbyn promotes top supporter and paves the way for 'end of Thatcherism'
The Labour leader has handed out 20 new jobs.
Jeremy Corbyn’s appointment of a vocal supporter to the front bench is "a sign that the days of free market Thatcherism are coming to an end", a key ally has declared.
Labour party chairman Ian Lavery spoke out after Corbyn announced the appointment of 20 shadow ministers.
The Labour leader decided to overlook the likes of Chuka Umunna, Yvette Cooper, Hilary Benn and Ed Miliband as he filled his junior posts. But there was a rapid promotion for recently re-elected Chris Williamson.
Williamson is a former bricklayer and leader of Derby City Council, who was MP for Derby North from 2010 to 2015. He won back the marginal seat in the 2017 general election after standing on proudly pro-Corbyn platform. During the campaign, he argued that "Jeremy Corbyn has given Labour back its true values and our fighting spirit" and called his fight for the seat "a test case for Corbyn's politics".
Lavery recently warned that Labour is "too broad a church" and suggested that current MPs must "work very hard" to avoid deselection.
Responding to the appointment of Williamson, Lavery said: "Chris is a first class MP and a true representative of his constituency. He has a reputation as being no fan of neoliberalism and his appointment is a sign that the days of free market Thatcherism are coming to an end."
Also getting front bench jobs were former Coronation Street actress-turned Labour MP Tracy Brabin and former shadow minister for young people Gloria De Piero, who resigned last year in protest at Corbyn’s leadership.
Corbyn said: “I’m delighted to be filling Labour’s shadow front bench with a wealth of talent. Our new shadow ministers will bolster the excellent work of Labour’s shadow cabinet and departmental teams. These appointments are further evidence that Labour is not just the opposition – we are the government in waiting.”
The new appointments are:
Nick Thomas Symonds
Gloria De Piero
Roberta Blackman Woods
Women and equalities