The head of Britain’s main opposition Labour Party has ruthlessly shaken up his team of shadow cabinet members, demoting senior Blairites and bringing in more women as frontbenchers. Ed Miliband sacked Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary Liam Byrne and installed him as the Opposition spokesman on Higher Education. Ed’s reshuffle of the Shadow Cabinet was described by the Conservative Party as a proof that he was working on behalf of Unite General Secretary Len McCluskey. "Len McCluskey is the real winner of this reshuffle. Ed Miliband’s purged the moderates and promoted those who want the same old Labour policy of more spending, more borrowing and more debt”, said Conservative Party Chairman Grant Shapps. "That’s exactly what got us into a mess in the first place and it’s hardworking people who would pay the price through higher taxes and higher mortgage rates. "If Ed Miliband is too weak to stand up to Len McCluskey, he’s too weak to stand up for hardworking people",
Shapps added. Other casualties on the right of the party included shadow Education Secretary Stephen Twigg, who moved to justice, and Jim Murphy, who was shifted from Defence to International Development. A Labour source denied it was a purge of the Blairites, saying: “We have gone past the days of factionalism and labels. "This is about having the brightest and most talented members of the 2010 intake around the table." There are now 14 women and 18 men around the shadow Cabinet table. Miliband's reforms are likely to be seen as politically more significant because he also announced his team to run the 2015 election, making the shadow foreign secretary Douglas Alexander his election coordinator and drafting in Spencer Livermore to run the war room as the counterpoint to the Tories' Lynton Crosby. Here are the appointments Ed Miliband made: Rachel Reeves : promoted to shadow work and pensions secretary. He was previously working as shadow chief secretary to the Treasury. Liam Byrne :
demoted to shadow higher education minister. He previously was shadow work and pensions secretary. Vernon Coaker : promoted to shadow defence secretary. Coaker previously worked as shadow Northern Ireland secretary. Jim Murphy : demoted to shadow international development secretary. He was previously shadow defence secretary. Tristram Hunt : promoted to shadow education secretary. Hunt was previously shadow junior education minister. Maria Eagle : switched to shadow environment secretary. She was shadow transport secretary. Michael Dugher : promoted to shadow Cabinet Office minister, and also takes charge of political and campaign communications. Gloria De Piero : promoted to shadow minister for women and equalities. She is a former GMTV presenter, who is appointed to a post previously held by Yvette Cooper. Emma Reynolds : promoted to shadow housing minister attending shadow cabinet. She previously worked as shadow Europe minister. Stephen Twigg : demoted from shadow education secretary to shadow
constitutional affairs minister in the justice department. Chris Leslie : promoted from shadow Treasury minister to shadow chief secretary to the Treasury. Ivan Lewis : switched from shadow international development secretary to shadow Northern Ireland secretary. Mary Creagh : appointed shadow transport secretary. Creagh previously worked as shadow environment secretary. Douglas Alexander : remains shadow foreign secretary and becomes chair of general election strategy. Lord Falconer : will advise on planning and transition into government. The opposition Labour Party also had two casualties including: Rob Flello : had already resigned as shadow justice minister. Anne Maguire : had already resigned as shadow minister for disabled people.