Page 3 Profile: Tessa Jowell, politician


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The Independent Online

She’s a rather experienced politician.

Indeed. Dame Tessa Jowell has been the Labour MP for Dulwich and West Norwood since 1992 but, after more than 20 years in office, she has just announced that she plans to stand down as MP at the next general election.

A Blairite … right?

Yes and one of the major players in the London bid for the 2012 Olympics. Dame Tessa, who reportedly once said that she would “jump under a bus” for Tony Blair, served as Culture Secretary in the Marmite PM’s government and later as Olympic minister and paymaster general under Gordon Brown.

She deserves to put her feet up.

Don’t count on it. She will take up a post at the London School of Economics and there are whispers that she will also run as a London mayoral candidate in 2016 after she yesterday admitted she is “thinking” about it. Move over Boris.

How exciting. Tell me more about her credentials.

In a letter of reply to her resignation, Ed Miliband described her as a “unique politician”, while Tony Blair said she has a “rare integrity” and has achieved “great things”. Even potential rival Boris said her contribution to London has been “immense”.

I bet Dame Tessa couldn’t get a word in edgeways with that lot.

She’s hardly a shrinking violet.While keeping schtum on the mayoral front, the former Cabinet minister wrote an open address to her constituents, in which she said her resignation was “the hardest decision I have ever taken” and that she had “loved every day” as an MP. You can bet she’s got a lot more to say, too. Watch this space.