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All (well, some) change Sep 08

So Alan Milburn is drafted back into the Cabinet as Chancellor – sorry, Chancellor of the Duchy as Lancaster – after Blair gave up trying to drop Ian McCartney as party chairman.

Does this mean my taxes are now paying Cabinet level salaries for two party operatives? Or do these posts not cost taxpayers money? I don’t know the answer, but there is something distinctly wrong if we’re paying for Labour to employ a General Election co-ordinator.

Meanwhile, Michael Howard has also shuffled his front bench team. He seems to have given up on his supposedly radical idea of a small shadow cabinet from a few months back, although it’s not entirely clear why since the shadow cabinet doesn’t actually run anything. I wonder who the new Shadow Minister for Deregulation is actually shadowing; the same applies to Teresa May in her role as Shadow Minister for the Family.

Is he just inventing jobs for the sake of it? It’s a somewhat ham-fisted attempt to brand posts with a certain message. What next: Michael Ancram as Shadow Secretary of State for Looking Down Our Noses at Foreigners? David Davis to become Shadow Minister for Hanging and Flogging?

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