In quotes: Reaction to Alan Johnson's resignation

Published

Reaction to Alan Johnson's resignation and the appointment of Ed Balls as shadow chancellor.

ALAN JOHNSON

"I have decided to resign from the shadow cabinet for personal reasons to do with my family. I have found it difficult to cope with these personal issues in my private life whilst carrying out an important frontbench role. I am grateful to Ed Miliband for giving me the opportunity to serve as shadow chancellor of the exchequer.

"He is proving to be a formidable leader of the Labour Party and has shown me nothing but support and kindness. My time in Parliament will now be dedicated to serving my constituents and supporting the Labour Party. I will make no further comment about this matter."

ED MILIBAND - LABOUR LEADER

"Thank you for your letter confirming your wish to resign from the shadow cabinet. You have been an outstanding colleague and great friend for many years. In government you showed real leadership on issues that mattered to families across our country, promoting educational opportunity, introducing a constitution for the NHS and delivering neighbourhood policing.

"It has always been clear that you never lost sight of the reasons which first brought you into politics. As shadow chancellor you spoke clearly to the public warning of the dangers posed by the gamble the government is taking with growth and jobs. I particularly want to thank you for the support and advice you have shown me during that period.

"I wish you all the best at this difficult time, I know you will continue to make a major contribution to public life and the Labour Party."

ED BALLS - NEW SHADOW CHANCELLOR

"It is tough - Alan is a great loss. He has been a great public servant over many years. He and Ed Miliband have really taken the argument to the country that what George Osborne and David Cameron are doing is not necessary. We have got to get this deficit down but you don't get the deficit down by reckless, fast spending cuts. Ed and Alan have set that out. I will carry on Alan's work and do it to the absolute best of my abilities."

JIM MURPHY - SHADOW DEFENCE SECRETARY

"I think the Labour Party with Ed Balls as shadow chancellor will maintain the approach that Ed Miliband and Alan Johnson have set out of being mainstream, being credible on the deficit, being pro-business, in touch with business and companies across the UK, and also with its own vision for how the economy grows again."

GEORGE OSBORNE - CHANCELLOR OF THE EXCHEQUER

"Alan Johnson served his country at the top of British politics and will be missed from the front line."

MICHAEL FALLON - CONSERVATIVE PARTY VICE CHAIRMAN

"Alan Johnson is a good man and I wish him well. But what beggars belief is the appointment of Ed Balls. He was Gordon Brown's chief lieutenant and deficit denier-in-chief. It is an extraordinarily regressive appointment."

STEPHEN WILLIAMS - LIB DEM MP

"The decision to appoint Ed Balls as shadow chancellor shows that the Labour Party is now determined to carry on with the Gordon Brown economic plan that caused so much trouble for this country.

GERRY SUTCLIFFE - LABOUR MP

"It is surprising and sad that we are going to lose a very popular member of the shadow cabinet.

"Alan is a very private person and, if it is to do with his family - having known him for over 30 years - he will have made sure he puts his family first. Clearly it is a personal decision for him."