Talk about Newsnight

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Thursday, 28 June, 2007

  • Newsnight
  • 28 Jun 07, 07:12 PM

By programme producer Simon Enright.

milismith203.jpgNew Cabinet
Tonight the challenge of change has begun. Gordon Brown has kept in post only one of Tony Blair's cabinet. He's got the first female Home Secretary, two brothers and a husband and wife team all attending cabinet. Jeremy has promised to make sure that he goes through the whole cabinet so you feel fully informed. Michael Crick will explain what it all means.

Foreign Secretary
For the 41 year old David Miliband quite a daunting task - Foreign Secretary. Mark Urban assesses the challenge for the youngest foreign minister in 30 years. And we'll speak to a panel of "all the talents" to see what they think this all means.

As parts of England prepare for another weekend of rain we speak to the boss of the Environment Agency - Baroness Young. Has her agency done enough to stop the flood waters?

Manchester International Festival
Finally today is the start of the Manchester International Festival. Tomorrow Kirsty hosts Newsnight Review from the city. Ahead of that, tonight we interview "Manchester Man" Tony Wilson - the original 24 hour party person.

Join Jeremy at 2230.

Cabinet brothers

  • Michael Crick
  • 28 Jun 07, 04:46 PM

David (left) and Ed Miliband"So you'll be the first set of brothers in Cabinet since the Stanleys," I teased Ed Miliband the other evening, referring to the speculation that he would soon join his brother David in the new Gordon Brown Cabinet. Ed Miliband brushed my question off, of course, but then, once the camera was switched off, enquired eagerly: "Who were the Stanleys?"

Answer: the two sons of the seventeenth Earl of Derby, who sat in Cabinet together in 1938, under Neville Chamberlian. Lord (Edward) Stanley, was Dominions Secretary, while his younger brother Oliver Stanley, was President of the Board of Trade. It is not a happy precedent, however, since Lord (Edward) Stanley died only a few months after taking the job.

A more interesting pair of Cabinet brothers served after the war, though not simultanously, since they were on opposite sides of politics. Earl of Listowel briefly served for four months as Secretary of State for India in 1947, during Clement Attlee's post-war Labour Cabinet, whilst his brother John Hare (later Lord Blakenham) held posts in the early '60s, in the Cabinets of Harold Macmillan and Alec Douglas-Home.

Gordon's search for a star

  • Newsnight
  • 28 Jun 07, 02:41 PM

George ClooneyGordon Brown has said that he wants to have a government of "all the talents".

We've heard there are some surprises to come - we already know that he's asked Alan Sugar to advise him on business.

At the weekend, George Clooney was suggested to advise on education and Jennifer Lopez on International Development.

We want your "talent" and the jobs they should do. Let us know your thoughts here.

Fitting end?

  • Peter Barron
  • 28 Jun 07, 11:18 AM

Blair's gravestoneThanks to the hundreds of you who sent in suggestions for Tony Blair's political epitaph in 15 words. Some were funny, many were bitter, most mentioned Iraq with a smattering of spin and education, education, education. For him or against him, many thought he'd tried and meant well.

I'd pick three contenders to be carved into our virtual headstone:

"Here lies" by Dave Purnell, is economical and fiendish.

"He united his party for victory and divided his country in the name of freedom" from Simon Phillips-Hughes is elegant and factual.

But it's hard to do better than Sarah, quoting Mr Blair himself: "That is that, the end".

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