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Culture, Media & Sport Secretary
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Energy & Climate Change Secretary
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Transport Secretary
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Business, Innovation & Skills Secretary
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Prime Minister
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Foreign Secretary
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Defence Secretary
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Health Secretary
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Environment, Food & Rural Affairs Secretary
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Northern Ireland Secretary
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Wales Secretary
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Leader of the House of Lords
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Communities & Local Gov. Secretary
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Scotland Secretary
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Work & Pensions Secretary
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Justice Secretary
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Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster
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Chancellor of the Exchequer
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Home Secretary
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Education Secretary
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Leader of the House of Commons
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International Development Secretary
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Politicians

Profile Sorts and Filters

Voting History Sort

Current Cabinet

Voting History Sort not available on mobile. Please visit the desktop version for full functionality.

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Age:

Gender:

Constituency:

Current Position:

Secondary Education

University Education

Voting History:

Issue Support
Social
Equal gay rights
Hunting ban
Same-sex marriage
Furthering equality & human rights
Greater regulation of gambling
Foreign Policy and Defence
Overseas combat
Iraq War
Iraq War investigation
Updating Trident
More EU integration
EU referendum
Stronger Military Covenant
Welfare and Benefits
Bedroom Tax
Raising welfare benefits
Raising disability benefits
Localise council tax support
Reducing welfare benefits
Guaranteed jobs for young people
Legal Aid scipe restrictions
No-win no-fee legal costs limit
Letting agent fee restrictions
Taxation and Employment
Personal Allowance increase
VAT increase
Alcohol tax increase
Plane ticket tax increase
Fuel tax reduction
£150000+ Income Tax increase
Encouraging workplace pensions
Workplace pensions auto-enrolment
Bankers' bonus tax
Mansion tax
Employee shareholder-rights exchange
Slowing rail fare rises
Capping civil service redundancy payments
Business and the Economy
Corporation Tax reduction
Tax Avoidance measures
Company asset investment incentives
Royal Mail privatisation
Rent-only pub leases
Health
Limit private NHS service
NHS GPs buying services
Foundation hospitals
Smoking bans
Education
Greater school autonomy
Raising tuition fees
Academy schools
Ending Education Maintenance Allowance
University tuition fees
Constitution
Local Government funding reduction
An equal number of electors per constituency
Fewer MPs
Transparent Parliament
More proportional electoral system
Elected House of Lords
Business taxes to local councils
3rd party election campaign restrictions
Fixed-term Parliaments
Removal of Hereditary Peers
More powers for Welsh Assembly
More powers for Scottish Parliament
More powers for Local Councils
Register of lobbyists
2010 Coalition Agreement
Home Affairs
Stricter asylum system
Ministerial inquest intervention
ID cards
Police and Crime Commissioners
Retention of communications information
Labour's anti-terrorism laws
Secret court sessions
Environment
Climate change prevention measures
Selling England's forests
Low carbon energy incentives
Badger cull
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Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport

The Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport has overall responsibility for strategy and policy across the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.

The department's main policy areas are:

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Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change

The Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change has overall responsibility for the business of the Department of Energy and Climate Change and its policies. Responsibilities include:

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Secretary of State for Transport

The Secretary of State for Transport has overall responsibility for the policies of the Department for Transport. Responsibilities include:

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Business, Innovation and Skills Secretary

The Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills is responsible for strategy and policy across the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS). The department's main policy areas are:

The Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills is responsible for:

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Prime Minister

The Prime Minister is head of the UK government and is ultimately responsible for the policy and decisions of the government.

As head of the UK government the Prime Minister also:

The Prime Minister usually holds additional roles such as the First Lord of the Treasury and the Minister For the Civil Service.

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Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs

The Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs has overall responsibility for the work of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, with particular focus on:

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Secretary of State for Defence

The Secretary of State for Defence has overall responsibility for the business of the department providing strategic direction on policy, operations, acquisition and personnel matters, including:

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Secretary of State for Health

The Secretary of State for Health has overall responsibility for the work of the Department of Health (DH). DH provides strategic leadership for public health, the NHS and social care in England, focused around 5 key priorities:

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Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

The Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has overall responsibility for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. Responsibilities include:

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Secretary of State for Northern Ireland

The Secretary of State for Northern Ireland has overall responsibility for the policies of the Northern Ireland Office.

Responsibilities include:

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Secretary of State for Wales

The Secretary of State for Wales is responsible for the overall strategic direction of the Wales Office.

Responsibilities include:

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Leader of the House of Lords

The Leader of the House of Lords is responsible for the organisation of government business in the House, providing assistance to all Lords and offering advice on procedure. The Leader also expresses the collective feelings of the House on formal occasions, such as motions of thanks or congratulations.

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Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government

The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government is responsible for the overall strategic direction of the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG). Main areas of responsibility include:

The position is currently coupled with that of Minister for Faith.

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Secretary of State for Scotland

The main role of the Scottish Secretary is to promote and protect the devolution settlement.

Other responsibilities include:

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Secretary of State for Work and Pensions

The Secretary of State for Work and Pensions has overall responsibility for the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).

DWP is responsible for the administration of the state pension and working age benefits system, providing support to:

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Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice

The Secretary of State for Justice has oversight of all of Ministry of Justice business and is responsible for making improvements to the criminal justice and prison system so that it better serves the public. Other responsibilities include:

He receives a salary as Lord Chancellor and is unpaid as Secretary of State for Justice.

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Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster

The Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster is in overall charge of the Cabinet Office. The role has responsibility for:

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Chancellor of the Exchequer

The Chancellor of the Exchequer is the government's chief financial minister and as such is responsible for raising revenue through taxation or borrowing and for controlling public spending. He has overall responsibility for the work of the Treasury.

The Chancellor's responsibilities cover:

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Secretary of State for the Home Department

The Secretary of State for the Home Department has overall responsibility for all Home Office business, including:

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Secretary of State for Education

The Secretary of State for Education is responsible for the work of the Department for Education, including:

The position is currently coupled with that of the Minister for Women and Equalities.

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Leader of the House of Commons

The Leader of the House of Commons organises government business in the House of Commons and works closely with the government's Chief Whip.

In recent years the role of Lord President of the Council has been linked with the role of Leader of the House of Commons, however the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, Rt Hon Nick Clegg, currently holds the post.

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Secretary of State for International Development

The Secretary of State for International Development leads the Department for International Development (DFID) ministerial team and sets the overall strategy and direction of the department. They have final authority over all DFID business.

About

Fantasy Frontbench is a not-for-profit organisation run by a team of dedicated volunteers. Our aim is to present political information in a format that is engaging and accessible. We hope you enjoy using the tool and that it allows you to gain a better understanding of the workings of government and how MPs have voted on major issues.

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Data Sources

If you believe any of the data featured on the website to be inaccurate, please use the data reporting form available here: www.fantasyfrontbench.com/reportdata. Please cite the data thought to be inaccurate, detail where it appears on the website and if available the correct piece of data with source. Should we find the claim to be accurate, we will amend the data as soon as we are practically able to.

MP Data

All data relating to MPs comes directly from http://www.theyworkforyou.com with the exception of:

  1. a limited number of date-of-births
  2. secondary education and type
  3. university education and type

Such missing data has been subject to manual research and has predominantly been derived from sources where it seems reasonable that we might use the data on this site, such as the party's official webpage for that candidate, an MP’s official website, and Wikipedia.

Where data has not been made available, it has been left as blank. If you have detail of any missing data, please submit it and source using the following form: www.fantasyfrontbench.com/missingdata.

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How do I report inaccurate data?

If you spot a piece of information that you believe to be inaccurate, please let us know about this so we can look into it. Please send an email to data@fantasyfrontbench.com detailing the piece of information you believe to be inaccurate, where it appears on the site and what the information should read. If possible, also provide a source for your information. If our researchers agree that the claim is correct, we will ensure we amend the inaccurate data as soon as possible.

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FAQs

Who and what decides the voting history categories?

The voting history categories and data used in Fantasy Frontbench are provided by www.theyworkforyou.com and www.publicwhip.org.uk. All the House of Commons and House of Lords debate transcripts (collectively, Hansard) dating back to 1988 are available online. Public Whip have written a programme which reads them and separates out all the records of voting. These votes (divisions as they are known in parliament) are then grouped into Policies which represent a view on a particular issue. The Policies are then interpreted by They Work For You in a way which makes them easily understandable yet is an accurate reflection of the votes that make up the Policy.

This process of grouping votes into Policies has been carried out by a mix of volunteers and researchers funded by My Society and the results have been featured on www.theyworkforyou.com and www.publicwhip.org.uk for over a decade. If you disagree with the clarity of an issue or the choice of votes that make up a Policy, you may challenge them by emailing support@theyworkforyou.com or team@publicwhip.org.uk. It is important to note that the purpose of these Policies is to act as an overview and provide an indication of the ways in which MPs have voted. As Public Whip themselves state: “Policies are intended be a tool for checking the voting behaviour of an MP or a Lord, on top of the ability to read their individual votes. They provide nothing more than a flash summary of the data, a summary which you can drill down through to get to the raw evidence.”

For more information on how Policies are formed, please visit http://www.publicwhip.org.uk/faq.php#how

Some of the voting history items appear to worded in a way I feel is not entirely impartial. How do you decide on the wording for these?

The voting history item wordings and descriptions are written by our researchers based on the information featured on They Work For You and the votes that make up each policy as featured on Public Whip. Our primary aim when titling issues and writing the accompanying descriptions is for them to be as easy to understand as possible whilst remaining as impartial as possible. This means that in some cases we opt to use a term that is the product of a political party. However, only if we feel the term has gained such usage that it is now better understood than the original policy description. An example of this would be ‘bedroom tax’, although the term was coined by Labour, it is now more widely understood than the original term used to describe this, ‘under-occupancy penalty’.

How are the MP’s voting supports e.g. strongly for, calculated?

As with the voting history categories, the strength of support e.g. strongly for, attributed to issues for each MP is based on the data compiled by Public Whip and the interpretation of this data by They Work For You.

Public Whip have created a formula for calculating how strongly MPs are in favour of Policy which takes into account how they have (or have not) voted on the individual votes which relate to that Policy. Here is their explanation of how the strength of support is calculated:

“The MP's votes count towards a weighted average where the most important votes get 50 points, less important votes get 10 points, and less important votes for which the MP was absent get 2 points. In important votes the MP gets awarded the full 50 points for voting the same as the policy, no points for voting against the policy, and 25 points for not voting. In less important votes, the MP gets 10 points for voting with the policy, no points for voting against, and 1 (out of 2) if absent.”

Once the strength of support has been calculated, a label to make this figure easier to understand is applied by They Work For You. These labels are applied based on the following thresholds:

It is important to note that an MP’s voting record is not affected by what MPs and Peers have said, only how they voted in relation to that topic in the house - i.e. "aye" or "no". In many votes, as MPs are told how to vote (“whipped”) by their party, the strength of support attributed to them may not reflect their personal view of the issue. However, since the Whip is secret, we have to assume, like the speaker, that all votes are free.

Why is there a difference between the terms used to describe voting strength on Public Whip and Fantasy Frontbench?

Fantasy Frontbench using the same terminology as www.theyworkforyou.com. You will notice that on Public Whip, there is no ‘very strongly for’ or ‘very strongly against’ category used to describe voting support. Also, that ‘ambiguously’ is termed ‘for and against’. They Work For You have created these additional ‘very’ categories to provide users with a greater insight into the strength of voting. Please see the question above ‘How are the MP’s voting supports e.g. strongly for, calculated?’ for further information at which point the voting support strengths are applied.

There seems to be some differences between the data as featured on They Work For You/Public Whip and Fantasy Frontbench. Why is this?

They Work For You and Public Whip’s researchers are constantly reviewing the data featured on the sites in an aim to ensure that it is as accurately as possible. As this is the case, we re-import the updated data into Fantasy Frontbench very regularly.This means that sometimes there may be a short window before the data is updated on Fantasy Frontbench. This should never last any longer than a couple of days. If you notice any long-standing differences in data, please report them to data@fantasyfrontbench.com.

How do I report inaccurate data?

If you spot a piece of information that you believe to be inaccurate, please let us know about this so we can look into it. Please send an email to data@fantasyfrontbench.com detailing the piece of information you believe to be inaccurate, where it appears on the site and what the information should read. If possible, also provide a source for your information. If our researchers agree that the claim is correct, we will ensure we amend the inaccurate data as soon as possible.

How do you score points?

There is no way of scoring points on Fantasy Frontbench. You can however return to your frontbench after the general election to see which of your selected ministers won their seat and how many votes they each obtained. You will also be able to follow your ministers through the next term of parliament and monitor if the way they vote on issues changes.

How is Fantasy Frontbench funded?

Fantasy Frontbench is a not-for-profit organisation run by member volunteers. The project is funded by grant money from the Joseph Rowntree Reform Trust Ltd.

Why are there only current MPs? Why don’t you include all parliamentary candidates?

Fantasy Frontbench features sitting MPs from the last term of parliament.

There are over 3500 parliamentary candidates running for office at the 2015 general election. There is very little data available for the vast majority of these and most do not have a voting record (as they have not served in parliament). If we were to include all candidates, a large proportion of profiles would be virtually blank, making the tool very difficult to use. That being said, over the coming weeks in the run up to the election, we hope to add a number of non-sitting parliamentary candidates. These will be selected on a combination of public profile e.g. Alex Salmond, and their predicted likelihood of winning the vote in their constituency.

If you would like information about candidates running in your area, please visit www.yournextmp.com or www.yourcandidates.org.uk.

Should I base who I vote for on my Fantasy Frontbench?

Fantasy Frontbench is a (hopefully) fun tool for gaining a better understanding of how Parliament operates as well as seeing how sitting MPs have voted in the last term of parliament and prior to this (if they had a seat before the last term). Rather than relying on what politicians have said or say they will do, Fantasy Frontbench allows you to see what they have done.

Although Fantasy Frontbench will hopefully assist you with determining with which politicians (and therefore parties), your views most closely align, it should be used in conjunction with a number of other tools. We recommend the following:

and of course…

Are all of the politicians featured on Fantasy Frontbench standing at the general election 2015?

No, a number of MPs have announced that they will be standing down at the 2015 general election. If this is the case, it is clearly detailed on their profile card.

Can I use information from the site?

Yes, as long as you share it. Please see Data Sources for detail.

How do you handle my personal data?

All personal data is processed and stored in conjunction with the Data Protection Act 1998. Please see our Privacy Policy for further details.

Contact

If you’d like to get in touch with us, please email info@fantasyfrontbench.com or tweet us via @FantasyFbench.

What is the frontbench?

The frontbench physically refers to the front row of seats in the parliament. The rows of seats are grouped by political party. The main spokespeople for the group are usually centred at the front of the group and are then known as bring on the frontbench or frontbenchers. Those people of the party sitting further back are in turn referred to as backbenchers.

The political party in Government occupies the rows on the right hand side of as seen by the Chairman, also known as Speaker of the House of Commons or the Lord Speaker. Those benches on the left hand side of the Chairman are occupied by the opposition party, and therefore is the opposition frontbench, made up of shadow ministers of the Shadow Cabinet.

Independent and minority parties sit to the side and are referred to as crossbenchers.

Instructions

Welcome to Fantasy Frontbench, please see the instructions below for tips on how to use the tool:

Selecting Politicians

You can either look at all politicians in the tool or just the ones from a specific political party or grouping e.g. Shadow Cabinet. To change the party/grouping, click the dropdown arrow to the right of the politicians selection. To see a profile card for a politician, click the i next to their name or the name itself.

Adding a Politician to your Frontbench

To add a politician, click the [+] button to the right of their name. Corresponding [+] signs will then appear over each of the ministerial positions in your Frontbench. Simply click on the position in which you wish to put the politician to add them.

Sorting Politicians by Profile

Use these buttons to filter and sort politicians by their profile information. The gender, secondary education and university buttons filter the politicians by this information, removing those who don’t meet the criteria of your search. The age and parliamentary experience buttons are sorts which sort the list from high to low. To reverse the sort either click the [Sort] again or use the Reverse above the list of politicians.

Sorting Politicians by Voting History

You can sort the politicians in the tool by they way they have voted in parliament on a wide range of issues. Click a category e.g. [insert Social screenshot] to see the voting issues contained in that category. When you click a category, you will notice that the politicians in the selection are sorted by how they have voted on that issue, from ‘For (very strongly)’ to ‘Against (very strongly)’. To reverse the sort, click the Reverse. To view an explanation of a voting issue, click the information icon [i] to the right of it.

Electoral System

What is the cabinet?

The cabinet is a group of high-ranking government ministers selected to run the Departments of State, such as the Foreign Office, Home Office, Ministry of Defence and Treasury. The Prime Minister is the leader of the Cabinet.

How are cabinets formed?

The UK is divided into 650 constituencies. Each constituency votes for a MP (Member of Parliament) who usually represents a political party in the House of Commons. It is possible, but unusual, for independent candidates to be elected in Britain. The elected MP represents everyone within their constituency, whether they voted for them or not. Although MPs win their constituency through the electorate (all those eligible to vote in their area) they are expected to show loyalty towards their political party.

What is the House of Commons?

The House of Commons, the lower house, is one of two houses of the Parliament of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, which meets in the Palace of Westminster. It consists of the elected body of 650 Members of Parliament. The Speaker is the presiding officer of the House of Commons. They are responsible for maintaining order during debate, and may punish members who break the rules. When taking up the role of Speaker, the selected politician must renounce all affiliation with his or her political party and remain strictly non-partisan throughout their tenure.

What is the House of Lords?

The House of Lords, the upper house, is one of two houses of the Parliament of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. It meets in the Palace of Westminster in London. Members of the House of Lords are not elected, but appointed to their roles. Two types of Lords make up the house, the Lords Spiritual and Lords Temporal. Lords Spiritual sit in the house by virtue of the ecclesiastical role in the established Church of England. The Lords Temporal compose the rest of the membership, the majority of them being life peers who are appointed by the Monarch on the advice of the Prime Minister or the House of Lords Appointments Commission. The rest are hereditary peers. Membership was once a birthright of all hereditary peers, but under the House of Lords Act 1999 the right to membership was restricted to 92 hereditary peers. The vast majority of hereditary peerages can only be inherited by males, only two of the 92 hereditary peers are currently women.

What is Parliament?

What is commonly known as the UK or British Parliament is the Parliament of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. It is the supreme legislative (mean law-making) body in the United Kingdom, British Crown dependencies and British overseas territories. It possesses legislative supremacy, thereby ultimate power, over all other political bodies in the UK and its territories. Its head is the Sovereign of the United Kingdom, currently Queen Elizabeth II, and its seat is the Palace of Westminster in London.

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Fantasy Frontbench

Welcome to Fantasy Frontbench

Start adding politicians to your frontbench by clicking the [+] next to a politician\'s name followed by the cabinet seat you want to select them for. To view the profile card for a politician click the i button next to their name’.

Sort politicians by profile information and how they have voted in Parliament on major issues using the Profile Sorts & Filters and the Voting History Sort.

Once you have completed your Fantasy Frontbench, share it via Facebook and Twitter.

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