9 Most Influential Female MPs

8 Mar 2015

 

To celebrate International Women’s Day, the Election HUB has compiled a list of the most influential female MPs.  As the general election looms, it is important to recognise the lack of female politicians on the front and backbenches of the Commons, as well as the chronically male-dominated cabinet, however the following women form vital parts of our democracy. 

 

9.  Esther McVey

 

The former political reporter has made a name for herself in the duration of the Parliament.  The member for Wirral West was made a Parliamentary Private Secretary to Chris Grayling upon her election to the Commons and has risen through the ranks ever since.  Initially she was promoted to Under-Secretary for Disabilities, before becoming entering the Cabinet as Employment Minister.  She recently revealed that she has her sights set on becoming Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.

 

8.  Margaret Hodge

 

Hodge is one of the most revered women in British politics.  Having served various ministerial roles, including Children, Work and Culture and Tourism, under the New Labour administration, she is now Chair of the Public Accounts Committee.  She hasn’t just scrutinised the work of MPs in that role, but also of some of the UK’s most recognisable corporations.  Hodge has hauled figures from Starbucks, Google and Amazon to discuss their taxation contributions.

 

7.  Rachel Reeves

 

Reeves is the spearhead of one of the most powerful families within the Labour Party.  The MP for Leeds West’s sister, Ellie Reeves, is part of Labour’s National Executive Committee.  Her brother-in-law, John Cryer, is also an MP - as well as being the newly appointed Chair of the Parliamentary Labour Party.  Should Labour win in May, Reeves will enter the Cabinet as Work and Pensions Secretary.  She is also tipped by many as a future Labour leader.

 

6.  Sarah Wollaston

 

Dr Wollaston has become one of the most important MPs in the Commons.  In a time when the NHS is dominating the political agenda, the former GP from Totnes leads the Health Select Committee – the group responsible for holding Jeremy Hunt and his department to account.  She has gained notoriety within Westminster as a Tory rebel, opposing government recommendations on matters such as an EU referendum and military intervention in Syria.

 

5.  Caroline Lucas

 

The former leader of the Green Party often steals the political headlines with her unusual campaigning tools.  She has been reprimanded for wearing ‘No More Page Three’ t-shirts, told off for using visual aids in PMQs and even been arrested for opposing fracking.  However, Lucas’s antics have proved to be very popular with the electorate.  She has won multiple awards including prestigious ‘MP of the Year’ titles from multiple publications.

 

4.  Nicky Morgan

 

Appointed Education Secretary last July, Morgan has control over what young people will learn, when they will learn it and how.  Prior to this role, she served in the treasury as an Economic Secretary alongside George Osborne and Sajid Javid.  She is also the current Minister for Women and Equalities in the Coalition Government.  She has recently called on the female electorate to turn out in May, ‘women died for the vote - it's incumbent on all of us to use it’

 

3.  Harriet Harman

 

The Deputy Leader of the Labour Party has held a wealth of senior positions in the Commons during her 33 years as an MP for Camberwell and Peckham.  These include Minister for Women, Social Security Secretary, Leader of the Commons and Shadow Culture Secretary as well as interim roles as Leader of the Opposition and Labour leader.  Known for her passionate feminism, there is a strong chance that Harman will take over from Nick Clegg as Deputy Prime Minister in May.

 

2.  Yvette Cooper

 

Just edging Harman to most influential Labour MP on our list is Yvette Cooper, the Shadow Home Secretary.  She has been one of the most vocal members of the Shadow Cabinet over the past five years, often embroiled in heated exchanges with opposite number Theresa May.  In 2010 she topped the Labour ballot for Shadow Cabinet places and is still seen as one of the party’s most popular figures; so much so that she is the odds-on favourite to be the next leader.

 

1.  Theresa May

 

Emerging as the most influential female member of the Commons is Theresa May.  As Home Secretary since 2010, she holds the record for the longest tenure in that position.  Like Harman, she has held a huge number of major roles in Westminster - including Party Chair, Shadow Leader of the Commons and Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary.  She regularly tops polls speculating on the next Conservative leader, defeating George Osborne and Boris Johnson. 

Regardless of the outcome of the General Election, May is certain to continue in one of the most powerful roles in British politics.

 

 

Honourable mentions must also go to Tessa Jowell - the former Olympics Minister with hopes of becoming London’s next Mayor, Stella Creasy - the rising star of the Labour Party who has successfully campaigned against pay day loan companies, and Justine Greening - the International Development Secretary representing the United Kingdom on the global stage.

 

Here is hoping that these women will be joined by a vast number of new female MPs in May in all areas of politics.  ‘When women thrive, all of society benefits, and succeeding generations are given a better start in life.’ - Kofi Annan.

To celebrate International Women’s Day, the Election HUB has compiled a list of the most influential female MPs.  As the general election looms, it is important to recognise the lack of female politicians on the front and backbenches of the Commons, as well as the chronically male-dominated cabinet, however the following women form vital parts of our democracy.

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