PM tilt at Clegg on women ministers

Romsey Advertiser: Home Secretary Theresa May is one of three female Cabinet members Home Secretary Theresa May is one of three female Cabinet members

David Cameron took aim at Nick Clegg today as he insisted the Liberal Democrats n eed to "pull their weight" on ensuring there are more female Cabinet ministers.

The Prime Minister was challenged by Labour to explain why only three of the 22 Government departments are run by women.

But Mr Cameron, sitting next to Deputy Prime Minister Mr Clegg, turned on his coalition partner in Prime Minister's Questions as he told the Commons: "What I said is I wanted to see a third of my front bench ministers being women at the end of a Conservative government.

"We have made some important progress in terms of the numbers of people on the front bench.

"I have to say, with respect to my coalition partner, that in terms of Cabinet numbers the Liberal Democrats need to do a bit more to pull their weight on this issue.

"But I hope to be making further progress."

The number of female Cabinet members is lower now than it was when the coalition came to power.

In 2010, there were five women members of the Cabinet, although at that time no others had the right to attend the meetings.

Home Secretary Theresa May, International Development Secretary Justine Greening and Northern Ireland Secretary Theresa Villiers are the only female full members of Mr Cameron's top team.

They are all Conservative MPs.

Lib Dem Business Minister Jenny Willott became the first woman from the party to sit at the Cabinet table this week, although she does not have voting rights.

Tory Treasury Minister Nicky Morgan also attends Cabinet.

Mr Cameron was replying to a question from s hadow minister Catherine McKinnell.

She told the PM: "You promised by the end of this Parliament a third of your cabinet would be women.

"We know that the former culture secretary (Maria Miller) had to go but we now have only three out of 22 of your departments run by women.

"Do you agree with the new Culture Secretary (Sajid Javid) that this is because Government appointments should always be made on merit?"

Lib Dem Lorely Burt (Solihull) later told Mr Cameron: "Could I gently tell you that Liberal Democrat women not only pull their weight but are perfectly ready and willing to punch above their weight."

Comments (8)

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2:28pm Wed 30 Apr 14

MrBenggo says...

What does it say when the only qualification for being an MP is that you are a woman,it's the same with all three main parties.
What does it say when the only qualification for being an MP is that you are a woman,it's the same with all three main parties. MrBenggo
  • Score: 11

3:33pm Wed 30 Apr 14

ConcernedOssy says...

MrBenggo wrote:
What does it say when the only qualification for being an MP is that you are a woman,it's the same with all three main parties.
It's also the same with local Clowncils but I thought maps swung both ways now !!
[quote][p][bold]MrBenggo[/bold] wrote: What does it say when the only qualification for being an MP is that you are a woman,it's the same with all three main parties.[/p][/quote]It's also the same with local Clowncils but I thought maps swung both ways now !! ConcernedOssy
  • Score: 6

3:35pm Wed 30 Apr 14

ConcernedOssy says...

ConcernedOssy wrote:
MrBenggo wrote:
What does it say when the only qualification for being an MP is that you are a woman,it's the same with all three main parties.
It's also the same with local Clowncils but I thought maps swung both ways now !!
Should read MPs
[quote][p][bold]ConcernedOssy[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]MrBenggo[/bold] wrote: What does it say when the only qualification for being an MP is that you are a woman,it's the same with all three main parties.[/p][/quote]It's also the same with local Clowncils but I thought maps swung both ways now !![/p][/quote]Should read MPs ConcernedOssy
  • Score: 6

4:10pm Wed 30 Apr 14

ColdAsChristmas says...

We need MP's with some grey matter between their ears. What they have between their legs won't stop them from making stupid decisions on the public's behalf!.
We need MP's with some grey matter between their ears. What they have between their legs won't stop them from making stupid decisions on the public's behalf!. ColdAsChristmas
  • Score: 7

4:54pm Wed 30 Apr 14

ConcernedOssy says...

Making stupid decisions seems to set in stone now
Making stupid decisions seems to set in stone now ConcernedOssy
  • Score: 5

5:23pm Wed 30 Apr 14

Sir Prised says...

Most of the questions posed by women MPs concern 'Women's issues', it's really noticeable. If you want a representative who sees the bigger picture, then stick with a man who wont personalise everything !!!
Most of the questions posed by women MPs concern 'Women's issues', it's really noticeable. If you want a representative who sees the bigger picture, then stick with a man who wont personalise everything !!! Sir Prised
  • Score: -2

11:25pm Wed 30 Apr 14

Johns54 says...

We don't want another maggie do we.
We don't want another maggie do we. Johns54
  • Score: 2

1:26am Thu 1 May 14

Katie Re-Registered says...

To be accurately representative of the population, the House of Commons should be around 49 per cent female, 48 per cent male and 1 per cent intersex and/or non-gender binary conforming. However, this all becomes somewhat academic as we haven't even got a legal system that ensures equal pay for equal work yet. So many equal opportunities drives seem to concentrate on women in top, high-paying careers and getting more women into the boardroom etc. that they seem to have forgotten about the secretary who gets paid 15 per cent less than her male colleague for doing exactly the same job (and often more!) simply because their boss has afforded him a more grandiose job title. What I'd like to know is just why the same job is suddenly considered more important and worthy of more respect when a man does it? The essential, low-paid jobs like admin, nursing, cleaning and caring seem to be taken for granted because they are traditionally female dominated - I think society desperately needs to recognise that these jobs and the workers who do them are seriously undervalued and grossly underpaid in comparison to many male-dominated jobs that do little else but take, take, take instead of giving and making a contribution to the well-being and betterment of society.
To be accurately representative of the population, the House of Commons should be around 49 per cent female, 48 per cent male and 1 per cent intersex and/or non-gender binary conforming. However, this all becomes somewhat academic as we haven't even got a legal system that ensures equal pay for equal work yet. So many equal opportunities drives seem to concentrate on women in top, high-paying careers and getting more women into the boardroom etc. that they seem to have forgotten about the secretary who gets paid 15 per cent less than her male colleague for doing exactly the same job (and often more!) simply because their boss has afforded him a more grandiose job title. What I'd like to know is just why the same job is suddenly considered more important and worthy of more respect when a man does it? The essential, low-paid jobs like admin, nursing, cleaning and caring seem to be taken for granted because they are traditionally female dominated - I think society desperately needs to recognise that these jobs and the workers who do them are seriously undervalued and grossly underpaid in comparison to many male-dominated jobs that do little else but take, take, take instead of giving and making a contribution to the well-being and betterment of society. Katie Re-Registered
  • Score: 1
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