Shadow secretary of state for health (New entry)

The former health secretary has regained the shadow post he was gutted to lose to John Healey after the general election. A smooth parliamentary operator with plenty of contacts and knowledge to fall back on, he may make a formidable rival to Andrew Lansley. His weaknesses, which the health secretary will seek to exploit, are his record in office - which saw him flipflopping on issues such as competition and the fact that, as a Blairite, Mr Burnham actually believes in a lot of what the health secretary is doing; although he would adopt different methods.