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Last Updated: Thursday, 20 December 2007, 17:45 GMT
Clegg reveals his frontbench team
Nick Clegg
Mr Clegg was named Lib Dem leader earlier this week
New Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg has unveiled his frontbench team, with defeated rival Chris Huhne given the job of home affairs spokesman.

Ed Davey takes the foreign affairs brief, while Vince Cable remains Treasury spokesman and deputy leader.

Ex-leader Sir Menzies Campbell is to join the all-party Commons foreign affairs select committee.

Mr Clegg beat Mr Huhne to the party leadership by just 511 members' votes following a two-month contest.

"I'm hugely excited to announce my new shadow cabinet. I think this team is the strongest political team in British politics today," he said.

"That is a team I'm proud of. That is a team which I think will really take my messages, my priorities and that of the Liberal Democrats out to the British people."

LIB DEM TOP TEAM
Leader: Nick Clegg
Treasury: Vince Cable
Home affairs: Chris Huhne
Foreign: Ed Davey

Sir Menzies - who stepped down as Lib Dem leader in October - will also conduct a review of the UK's military capacity for the party.

His predecessor, Charles Kennedy, will be "campaigning across the country on European issues", occasionally speaking on the party's behalf on the issue.

As part of the reshuffle, Steve Webb, who was in charge of writing the Lib Dems' next election manifesto, becomes environment spokesman.

Julia Goldsworthy will speak on local government and communities and David Laws stays as schools spokesman, but with a wider public services brief.

Norman Baker is promoted to transport spokesman, while Sarah Teather goes from universities and skills to business, enterprise and regulatory reform. Her former role will be filled by Stephen Williams.

Expanded team

Meanwhile, Lembit Opik is named the Lib Dem housing spokesman, and is replaced as Northern Ireland spokesman by Alistair Carmichael.

Susan Kramer will speak on family issues, and Michael Moore goes from foreign affairs to international development.

Mr Clegg has included youth and equality spokeswoman Lynne Featherstone and countryside spokesman Tim Farron in his team, even though they will shadow ministers who are outside Gordon Brown's cabinet.

A Lib Dem source said Mr Clegg wanted their positions to reflect the importance he gives to these policy areas, and did not feel obliged to mirror exactly the structure chosen by the prime minister.

The frontbench team has expanded from 23 under Sir Menzies's leadership to 30 - with another two MPs attending its meetings. It means almost half of all the 63 Lib Dem MPs have places in the senior team.

Mr Clegg had himself been home affairs spokesman before winning the vote by party members, while Mr Huhne had been environment spokesman.

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