Ed Miliband approached Alan Johnson about a return to the Shadow Cabinet ahead of the next election but was turned down by the former Home Secretary.
Mr Johnson, still one of Labour’s most popular politicians and now a best-selling author, revealed how much he had disliked his short spell as shadow chancellor after the 2010 election.
But he admitted that he would “disgracefully” consider a ministerial role if Labour won in May.
“Ed said to me a few months ago, ‘I suppose you’re not interested in coming back?’ I said ‘No’,” he told Alastair Campbell in an interview for GQ magazine.
He said he had been surprised when Mr Miliband offered him the post of shadow chancellor after becoming leader in 2010 and admitted that he had not enjoyed the job.
“I was glad to get out. I took it because I thought, what an extraordinary gesture, that he wants me there. I was not associated with him [Mr Miliband], I’m very much a Blairite. I had not been planning to go on the front bench. But my heart wasn’t in it,” he said.
He would, however, be happy “to go round the country, campaigning, talking to parties”.Reuse content