Shred Ed: Miliband Sacks Old Guard

Ed Miliband’s reshuffle is well under-way and he’s sacked one of the few former Labour Ministers to back him in the leadership contest. John Denham, who is said to have helped Ed craft the “good business/bad business” section of his conference speech that saw him so ridiculed, has been given the chop. To add to the humiliation, Denham will become the unpaid PPS to the leader, which means the former Brown spinner Michael Dugher is definitely is going up.

It wouldn’t be a reshuffle without someone quitting to “spend more time with their family”, so step forward please John Healey. The invisible Shadow Health Secretary was allegedly offered a lesser job, but decided to walk instead. Ed has gushed during the exchange of letters a little too much for this to have been anything other than a sacking. There’s an hilarious rumour doing the rounds that Caroline Flint will be given this poisoned chalice. Lansley will be shaking in his boots, and Burnham would be the obvious choice…

Elsewhere David Miliband, the man that quit to spend less time with his family, is not expected to return, though there is some speculation that Alan Johnson might be ready to put his head back above the parapet. As predicted here Meg Hillier is set to go, and Ann McKechin was spotted yesterday afternoon looking sad. There will hardly be tears shed if Shaun Woodward is put out to pasture. Plenty of room for those long tipped 2010 intakers to ruin their careers and jump on Ed’s sinking ship…

UPDATE: The BBC is tipping Gloria to take over from Ivan Lewis.



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GuidoFawkes Quote of the Day

Former Labour MP Dame Anne Begg:

“[Iain Duncan Smith] took to standing behind me during Prime Minister’s Questions. He stood at what’s called the Bar of the House and occasionally he would lean on my wheelchair. Our working relationship was slightly fraught anyway because I’d been critical of him a lot. I wanted to keep that criticism a professional criticism, not a criticism of him as a person so I never quite built up the courage to actually say: ‘Please don’t do that.'”

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