Portillo's nemesis Twigg is promoted to schools post

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Indy Politics

Stephen Twigg, who was promoted yesterday to the post of School Standards minister, is best known for the look of pure surprise on his face when he defeated Michael Portillo at the 1997 general election.

Stephen Twigg, who was promoted yesterday to the post of School Standards minister, is best known for the look of pure surprise on his face when he defeated Michael Portillo at the 1997 general election.

But since entering the Commons Mr Twigg has worked hard to boost his majority in Enfield Southgate where he is often seen "pounding the streets". Known affectionately as "Twiggy", he is a popular figure in the Commons.

He went to a comprehensive school in the constituency and Balliol College Oxford, where he studied politics and economics. A former president of the National Union of Students, he is regarded as a progressive and has advocated co-operation with the Liberal Democrats and electoral reform.

In 2001 he joined the Government as Deputy Leader of the Commons. As London Schools Minister, he gained plaudits for improving standards in poor boroughs. He is replaced in his former post by Derek Twigg, MP for Halton.

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