Andrew Smith (politician)

Infobox MP
honorific-prefix =
name = Andrew Smith
honorific-suffix = MP

caption = The Rt Hon. Andrew Smith, with Hilary Benn in the background
office = Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
term_start = 29 May 2002
term_end = 8 September 2004
primeminister =Tony Blair
predecessor = Alistair Darling
successor = Alan Johnson
office2 = Chief Secretary to the Treasury
term_start2 =11 October 1999
term_end2 = 29 May 2002
primeminister2 =Tony Blair
predecessor2 = Alan Milburn
successor2 = Paul Boateng
constituency_MP3 = Oxford East
parliament3 =
majority3 = 963 (2.3%)
predecessor3 = Steven Norris
successor3 = Incumbent
term_start3 = 11 June 1987
term_end3 =
birth_date = Birth date and age|1952|02|1|df=yes
birth_place = Wokingham, Berkshire
death_date =
death_place =
nationality = British
spouse =
party = Labour
relations =
children =
residence =
alma_mater =
occupation =
profession =
religion =

website =
footnotes =

Andrew David Smith (born 1 February 1952, near Reading) is a British politician for the Labour Party, and a former member of the Cabinet.

Early life

He went to Reading Grammar School, then went to St John's College, Oxford, where he gained a BA and BPhil. He was the Member Relations Officer for Oxford and Swindon Co-op Society from 1979-87. He became an Oxford City councillor when aged 25 in 1976, leaving the council in 1987.

Parliamentary career

He contested Oxford East in 1983. He is MP for Oxford East, which he won in 1987 from the Conservative Party. After Labour's victory in the 1997 general election he was made a minister in the Department for Education and Employment. He was Chief Secretary to the Treasury from 1999 to 2002, when he became Secretary of State for Work and Pensions; he resigned from this post on 6 September 2004, to spend more time with his family. He won re-election in his Oxford East seat in the 2005 General Election, but saw his majority slashed by 90%.

He is best remembered by some for his opposing of the privatisation of air traffic control in 1996 stating "Our air is not for sale" only for Labour to switch policies and thereby propose a public-private partnership for the National Air Traffic Services. Others point to his stewardship of the Department of Work & Pensions and his focus on reducing child poverty when Minister there.

Smith rarely rebels against his party in Parliament, of the five occasions that he has voted against the government whip since 2001, two of the votes were Smith refusing to accept the Trident Nuclear Weapons System replacement.

Personal life

His wife Val Smith is a county councillor on Oxfordshire County Council and city councillor on Oxford City Council. He married Valerie Miles on March 26, 1976. They have a son.

External links

* [ Andrew Smith MP] official site
* [,9290,-4827,00.html Guardian Unlimited Politics - Ask Aristotle: Andrew Smith MP]
* [ They Work For You - Andrew Smith MP]
* [ BBC Politics page]

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